Behind the Bucking Chutes

Behind the Bucking Chutes is where cowboy church usually takes place at a rodeo or bull riding. Here, we give you a growing collection of Biblical devotions or stories meant to help disciple and teach you or help you to become closer to Christ with illustrations and applications drawn from the cowboy and rodeo culture.
We can be strong, we can fight woke, we have to remember Jesus’s words still stand

We can be strong, we can fight woke, we have to remember Jesus’s words still stand

By Scott HIlgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

We have a conservative and even Christian culture right now that is turning hard against anything that can be described with the term “woke.”

The obvious ones are the cultural topics around women’s issues that blur into issues about transgender rights that blur into issues about toxic masculinity. Movies and television shows seem to endlessly work these kinds of issues into their storylines while corporations work to champion various causes.

As they do this, boycotts are encouraged and a tactic is used that once seemed to largely only come from ‘the left’–cancellation. Cancel culture is becoming more widely used.

We have to be so careful that as woke agendas spread and efforts to push back against them grow, that somehow we don’t start canceling what Jesus teaches us that sometimes seems to go against our conservative values.

Anything from the pulpit that pushes us to support the poor can begin to sound like it follows a liberal view. Anything that pushes us to be kind to those who are different from us, even if they are trampling on our political freedoms, can begin to sound like it follows a liberal view. For the cowboy crowd, where strength, courage, toughness and independence are encouraged, anything that sounds like it pushes behavior we think of as weak, can lead us to want to rebel and push back.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

In a culture pushing back against what we consider ‘woke’, Paul admitting to his weakness begins to sound woke as well.

It’s easy to rebel against the idea of being content with weakness and taking insults. It’s easy to miss just who Paul is and what he is really telling us.

Paul turned his life around from being a persecutor of Christians to a someone who converted others to Christianity. Strength. He was shipwrecked and imprisoned awaiting death, yet continued to preach love and forgiveness. Strength.

Boasting in weakness? Strength!


Because it shows the world around us that when we are weak, and we all suffer times when we can’t handle a difficult circumstance, God’s grace toward us and His power to get us through that situation are made clear to others, giving them a chance to find a saving faith in Jesus. For us to be made strong by God, we first have to experience being weak.

In the months ahead, the worst thing we could do to our salvation and others’ is to start rejecting some of the teachings of Jesus because we don’t like it when he tells us to turn the other cheek or be kind to the person that hurt us.

It’s good for Christians to fight for their rights in freedoms, whatever country they are from. It’s best to do it while putting Jesus first.

Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

Not all fathers are perfect but there is One who is

Not all fathers are perfect but there is One who is

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

There’s a sad reality that not all of us had great fathers and while this may not be universal, it certainly is common that most of us want to make our fathers proud.

As toddlers, we test our parents and look to our fathers and mothers to set boundaries for us.

Many of us as we grow up look for our father’s approval either with good grades, doing well at a sport or handing him the right tool as you work on a car together.

I’m sure there are studies out there that debate back and forth how this is learned social behavior or that it is innate behavior that we are simply born with.

Because of my faith, I believe God made us that way.

And He didn’t do it to set our fathers up to fail. Jesus was the only perfect person to walk the Earth and while as children, we can develop high expectations for our parents, we can also suffer tremendous hurt and disappointment.

In rodeo, I get to know some amazing fathers out there and I get to know some cowboys whose fathers have utterly failed them. There are plenty of rodeo cowboys out there competing not for their father’s approval, but to prove something to themselves about their own strengths and abilities.

Whether we had the ideal father who rarely let us down, a father who abused us, a father who just couldn’t get it right all the time or if we had no father at all, God wants us to have a sense of belonging to a father who is perfect and will love us unconditionally.

Ephesians 1:3-6 3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.

The idea of adoption is a big part of the gospel, God’s plan of salvation for us.

Through a saving faith in Jesus, our genuine repentance of sin and desire to be forgiven of our sins, God adopts us into a Heavenly family in which He becomes our Heavenly Father. As our Father in Heaven, he loves us unconditionally. He sees us through the sacrifice Jesus made for us which means He sees us as perfect. No matter what we’ve done or how we think we might have failed ourselves or our families or in some part of our lives, He doesn’t see any of that.

Not only doesn’t He see it, He both makes us perfect and gives us a perfect life. No matter how great of terrible our fathers are or were here, there was just no way they could accomplish that. It doesn’t mean we should love our fathers any less, it means we should give them the same grace that God has given us and then embrace the gift of God’s grace that gets us through this life and into that perfect one in Heaven.

Grace when we fail to follow the rules, why we should try to anyway

Grace when we fail to follow the rules, why we should try to anyway

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

Some of y’all got away without a rodeo fine and it shows.

Proverbs 10:17

Whoever heeds discipline shows the way to life,

but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.

The opening line is an attention-getting play on a meme that went around awhile back.

But there’s a truth to it. Where unpaid fines can mean fewer entries, there’s often a fear to issue them if it could affect a show. When it comes to issues like not showing up at a performance, that can have a costly impact on the producer and when there aren’t fines, it can turn this issue into a pattern of bad behavior. Then others, knowing they can get away with, do the same thing.

Rules are in place for a number of reasons: to keep order, to keep people from harm, to keep people from harming others.

Hundreds of verses in the Old Testament are rules that kept God’s chosen people in right standing with Him in addition to keeping order in their culture. Much of it is referred to as “The Law.”

Jesus came to fulfill the law. He died on the cross to take the punishment meant for our sins so that with a saving faith in him, repenting of our sin and asking to be forgiven, we no longer will be punished. Instead, we gain a perfect eternity in Heaven. We no longer have to follow any rules to be in right standing with God. Instead, through our salvation through Jesus, God sees us as perfect.

Even though the Bible is filled with instructions for us, God extends grace to us when we fail to follow them. It is never to give us an excuse to sin knowing we’re already forgiven; it allows us to move forward in this life without the burden of guilt or shame for the mistakes we’ve made.

But knowing we’ve been saved from God’s wrath, knowing the freedom we’ve been given from the burden of our mistakes and knowing the gift of a perfect eternity has been given to us, if our faith and salvation is real, how can we not want to try to live out a life that shows we’re being changed by what we are learning from our Bibles and the good biblical teaching out there? How can we not want to learn enough on our own so that we can also avoid the bad teaching that is out there, because there’s plenty of that to follow as well. Some of it is done with good intentions, much of it is not, all of it will lead you away from Jesus.

Yet many of us ignore the opportunities put in front of us, like this one right here, to learn and grow closer to Jesus, who saved us. For some, the hard reality is that our salvation was never real; our hearts never changed and we still don’t really understand the fullness of who Jesus is and what he did for us or we’ve never truly repented. For others, our salvation may be real but we still take advantage of God’s grace and love for us. Our Bibles sit unopened. We watch countless minutes of videos about anything other than ones posted by others right here in our cowboy and rodeo community that could teach us more. We ignore opportunities to attend cowboy church at a rodeo or we never set foot in a traditional church to learn more deeply than what can be offered at cowboy church.

If you’re in a good place with God and get all of this, what keeps you from sharing messages like this that could help point others to the need for Jesus? What keeps you from passing on to others anything deeper than the occasional self-help-sounding Bible verse or quote that may not even be in any kind of correct context; it just sounds good?

I’m grateful lately that God is showing me more people than ever in more than 20 years of ministry, that are not just listening at cowboy church but applying what they’re learning or, better yet, attending a traditional church when their rodeo schedule allows.

We don’t claim to be the best teachers out there and we can mess up sometimes like the rest of us, but every one of us that serves together under the Cowboys of the Cross umbrella, has a burden for you and the far bigger rodeo and cowboy crowd that are never going to see this message or give time to the other teaching we put out there week after week. We don’t do anything for attention for ourselves, but out of a desire to follow the Great Commission that God gave to all of us– to share the gospel (how to be saved) and to make disciples (teach others what Jesus taught us and God gave us through the Bible.)

We love you and want this for you: a perfect eternity in Heaven and a life transformed through a closer relationship with Jesus as we learn together from God’s word.

There are countless communities and people groups out there that need to hear and learn about Jesus. The cowboy crowd, full of strong, independent thinkers, isn’t an easy one, but I’m thankful God put me in this one because it has some of the most incredible people you could ever want to meet. It can sometimes be dysfunctional like any family, but that’s exactly what you get in this crowd: a family that looks out for one another. Let’s make looking out for each other’s souls a priority in this one.

Your plan might be to make the NFR, God’s might be different

Your plan might be to make the NFR, God’s might be different

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

Your plan might be to make it to the NFR or PBR finals. It might be to double the size of your herd. But God’s plan might be different. Guess which one is guaranteed to work out?

If you could do anything you wanted to do without having to worry about success or failure, how hard it will be to accomplish or what it could cost you to do it, most of us would jump at it, especially knowing the path to success was cleared ahead of us.

Sure, it could still be a lot of hard work but when it’s something we want to do, we are glad to put the work in. And while the path all the way to the end might not be clear, when we know there is a path to success already cleared ahead for us, then there’s really nothing to hold us back from getting started.

When we are doing what God wants us to do, that’s exactly what happens.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

God has something prepared for you to do.

We can easily forget there’s a difference between our desires and God’s desires for us. We have to learn to think differently.

Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Our culture, the ‘world’ the verse in Romans is referring to, tells us how to measure success. In rodeo, it can be making it to the PBR finals or NFR. Locally, it can be seeing your client base as a farrier double or enough horses sold to build that bigger barn you need. It can be raising three kids that turn out to be good citizens.

What if that isn’t God’s will for you?

Paul is telling us we need to shift our thinking toward what God’s direction would be.

When we are trying to figure out what the right thing to do is, if we are being transformed as Paul mentions in Romans, then we know it will line up with scripture and that’s a good way for us to test and know if we’re doing God’s will versus following our own desire.

It could still be winning that rodeo on the weekend or qualifying for the NFR or it could be seeing your horse farm double in size. But if it is those kinds of successes, there will most definitely be opportunities through those to glorify God and point others to Jesus. It will never be just about ourselves.

And if we struggle on whatever path God has placed us on, how we struggle will glorify God. It will glorify Him if we learn from it and grow more Christlike and it will glorify Him if others see us approaching a challenge while remaining joyful.

Jesus has some encouraging words in John.

John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.

When we are following Jesus and his direction, there’s no reason we won’t find success. What we succeed at is determined by God and He we will get us there.

Most try to get better at everything, we can let Jesus take care of what’s in our hearts

Most try to get better at everything, we can let Jesus take care of what’s in our hearts

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

Whether you run a 40 or 400 head cattle operation, chances are you’re looking for ways to improve the efficiency of the operation from cutting costs to better use of supplements in feed.

A horse training could be working to build a reputation to be the person a buyer goes to for a good roping horse.

That roper in turn puts time and effort to improve his skills with a lasso and to continue training his horse so together, they stand a better chance of winning the next rodeo.

There’s pressure to be better husbands and wives. There’s pressure to be better parents. There’s pressure to be better children. Pressure can come out of any number of difficult situations that put obstacles in the way of what we just want to be our happy lives. We put it on ourselves. or it comes from outside our control.

It can also feel like there’s pressure to be better Christians.

As we study our Bibles, learn from church sermons and are discipled by other believers, it can seem overwhelming to see how Jesus lived, how he taught us to live our lives and to think we’re supposed to be like him.

Philippians 1:6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

With Christ in us, there’s no pressure to change. The Holy Spirit is doing the work in us. That’s called sanctification, and is the process of becoming more like Jesus that begins when we experience salvation.

That’s where grace comes in. The first time we encounter it is in our salvation experience, when we are saved through Jesus’s death on the cross, realizing he took the punishment meant for our own sins. We then continue to experience grace each time we feel like we don’t measure up to the standards Jesus set for us.

Romans 3:23-24 Fall have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

Being justified means that through our salvation, we may not be perfect but God no longer sees our sin. That’s the grace God gives us—that we are no longer seen as sinners. That’s when sanctification begins.

As Paul says in Philippians, a good work was begun in us. That work is sanctification, the process of becoming more like Jesus. But he is clear that process won’t be complete until ‘the day of Christ Jesus.’ We understand that to mean that we won’t be perfect until we pass on to Heaven.

When we understand these things, the grace we’ve been given should be a motivator to want to be more like Jesus. Knowing there is no expectation we will ever be perfect in this life but that God is working in us to change us, we don’t need to feel any pressure to change. It will happen as God wants it to happen.

He paid more than your fees, Jesus cancels debt of sin

He paid more than your fees, Jesus cancels debt of sin

PART TWO of TWO Being Canceled

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

Cancel-culture wants us to be held accountable for our words and actions no matter how long ago and how much we have changed since then. Even without being a Christian, we mature and change so that sometimes views we held years ago aren’t even close to those we hold now.

Christians specifically go through a transformation we call sanctification, the process of becoming more like Jesus.

What the cancel culture around us doesn’t understand is what Jesus did for us to start the process of sanctification—he canceled our debt.

2 Colossians 2:13-14 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.

The debt referred to her means our offense or sin against God. Jesus canceled our debt by dying on the cross to take the punishment meant for our debt, our sin.

The gospel in really simple terms is built around Jesus paying the price for our debt. It’s our sins that separate us from God and are going to be judged and condemned by Him without Jesus. But Jesus was sent to live perfectly among us to serve as a sacrifice in place of our sins. His death on the cross took the punishment so that by believing Jesus was the Son of God, did in fact die for our sins and was resurrected after his death, and by acknowledging we’re sinners and asking to be forgiven, we can be forgiven of our sin—our debt is then paid for by Jesus’ death.

That’s how we have the phrase or understanding that Jesus paid the price for our sins. Where our culture holds our mistakes against us and wants to take away what we have for our past mistakes, it’s those past mistakes that God cancels through Jesus. He no long holds the past against us and even extends grace to future mistakes we might make.

It’s like having $500 in fines for a fight you got into with the arena boss that got out of hand when he pushed you to nod your head before the bull was off your leg. You weren’t going to be able to enter another rodeo until the fine was paid and knew you were in the wrong for throwing that left hook. You worked hard to set the money aside because you qualified for the finals but there was no way you could save that much on top of entry fees. You call the association office to see if you can convince them to find a way to let you enter only to find out the arena boss paid your fine and your entry fees.

Even though you sinned against him your whole life, your debt was canceled by Jesus and eternity in Heaven is waiting for you.

Canceled! God doesn’t hold our past words against us

Canceled! God doesn’t hold our past words against us

PART ONE of TWO Being Cancelled

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

A few years back, I watched a rodeo producer deal with the repercussions of a clown who made a joke that for several on the crowd, crossed the line over gender issues. This was before it was the current hot topic in almost daily news stories.

While it wasn’t a large group that was offended, a few of them carried some pretty big sticks and the incident escalated into media coverage and increasing angry mob that, while not even present at the event to understand the context, were demanding the producer be shut down from putting on events. It didn’t matter that he didn’t make the joke, that some of it was being taken out of context or the intent of the clown who ad-libbed the remark and was more careless than intending offense.

With the use of so many different social media platforms, even in writing, it’s easy to get carried away and say something inappropriate or offensive. But what was seen as offensive ten years ago can potentially be seen as hate speech today.

The current cultural trend to “cancel” anything we disagree with puts anything we’ve ever posted online under scrutiny if a controversial incident occurs, no matter how long ago.

As young adults, students have lost scholarships for posts they made when they were barely a teenager, with those stripping the scholarship away not caring at all that in that time period, a young person is still learning who they are and what they believe and what they think about our culture. What they would have said five years ago is different than what they would say today.

This is especially true of Christians and even more so of adults who come to a saving faith in Jesus. Ideas they were once firm about, having gone through their formative years, have been changed as they learn more about what the Bible teaches and allow themselves to become more like Jesus.

Ephesians 4:21-24 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Once we have a saving faith in Jesus, we are transformed. God immediately will look past our sin to see us as perfect while the Holy Spirit will begin to make us more holy, more like Jesus.

Without Jesus, I know by my 20s, my thoughts and attitudes were different from when I was a kid but once I became a Christian, they changed again. And they continue to change as I continue to learn and study more and allow the Holy Spirit to help me treat others more like Jesus would.

I can’t imagine being canceled for something I said online 10 years ago. I’m not that person anymore. I’m not even the person I was last year in Jesus, we are transformed. God immediately will look past our sin to see us as perfect while the Holy Spirit will begin to make us more holy, more like Jesus.

Without Jesus, I know by my 20s, my thoughts and attitudes were different from when I was a kid but once I became a Christian, they changed again. And they continue to change as I continue to learn and study more and allow the Holy Spirit to help me treat others more like Jesus would.

I can’t imagine being canceled for something I said online 10 years ago. I’m not that person anymore. I’m not even the person I was last year. But even when the world holds our past against us, God, through what Jesus did for us on the cross, will never hold it against us as long as we have placed our faith in Jesus.

(To understand more about a saving faith in Jesus and how to receive God’s gift of eternal life, be sure to read through the “our your entry fees paid” page).

Hope in Jesus is different than hoping for a good outcome at the rodeo

Hope in Jesus is different than hoping for a good outcome at the rodeo

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

When we don’t understand what hope is, we set ourselves up to lose it.

“If this situation doesn’t turn around soon, I’m going to lose my truck. I hope I find work soon.”

“That’s two dead calves this spring already, I hope there aren’t any issues with the rest.”

That’s the most common way we’re used to hearing the word, “hope” get used but it sets us up for discouragement when the job doesn’t come and the truck gets repossessed or you lose two more calves in a ridiculously bad calving season.

We put our hope in relationships or friends and family but people are going to fail and we’re going to get let down. As Christians, if we don’t understand what hope is according to scripture, we can get discouraged with God too.

It isn’t easy to change our perspectives but for Christians, our hope is placed in Jesus. That isn’t the same as hoping for a good outcome. “I hope you understand what I’m saying” means I desire a positive outcome that this is helpful. “I hope this job interview goes well” but it still could be a total disaster. With that use of the word hope, there are no guarantees and we can end up feeling defeated.

Hope in Jesus is different. That is something we can be confident in. When we have a saving faith in him, there are no guarantees that life here won’t be hard at times but we are guaranteed a perfect eternity in Heaven. What it means to put our hope in Jesus is that we can face this world’s struggles with the confidence that something amazing is waiting for us in an perfect eternity in Heaven.

1 Peter 3-8 gives some of the explanation.

3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Peter is showing us that we are going to face struggles here but that when we persevere with our thoughts focused on Jesus, he is glorified through our struggles while God preserves our salvation so that when we leave this world, we move on to that perfect eternity.

We place our hope in Jesus, using the word, “hope” in a completely different context—that we know our salvation is secured no matter what happens to us here.

How you measure success changes with Jesus

How you measure success changes with Jesus

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

How do you measure success?

When you run a beef operation, do you consider it successful when you’ve gambled right on when to sell and it paid off at the highest market prices of the season?

Is a finals jacket the target you set for yourself and now that you’ve got two, you can retire from team roping and just keep a couple horses around for fun?

We often look to the success of others to measure whether or not we think we’re successful too. This person seems to have a happy family, that person makes $80,000 a year. But then we can get stuck trying to figure out what is enough. There can always be another goal, the bar can always be raised higher.

It’s okay to pursue success. God asks us to give our best to everything we do.

But here’s the twist—are we chasing our goals or are we pursuing what God would have us do?

As Christian cowboys, it’s okay to celebrate that finals buckle or that record year of profit, but if we haven’t done it in a way that give God glory, that success can end up becoming pretty empty as we find ourselves looking for something more and feeling unfulfilled.

As Jesus knew his time was coming to die for us on that cross, he prayed for the disciples and the people who had come to a saving faith through him and in that prayer, he began by asking God to glorify him, not so that he would get that glory, but that all the work he did for God on Earth would point others to God and give God that glory.

John 17: 4 I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do.

Jesus was here to bring us all salvation by choosing to believe in him, repent of our sins and ask to be forgiven so that we could be saved through his sacrifice on the cross, taking the punishment that is otherwise meant for our sins. In that process, he worked many miracles, taught thousands and changed immeasurable lives but all of it was to bring glory to God until it was his time to die and ascend to Heaven.

When we have a saving faith in Jesus, there is nothing more we need to do to be made right with God, but we will experience a desire to become more like Jesus and to follow the instructions and commands the are given to us in Scripture. That means seeking out what God has for us to do.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

When we start to understand this, measuring success becomes less important when it becomes about doing what God has prepared for us to do. In this way, even what seems like failure to how we used to measure success can bring glory to God.

Christianity is like a saddle

Christianity is like a saddle

By Josh McCarthy / Cowboys of the Cross

I heard a good example that explains Christianity but I’m going to put my own spin on it.

Christianity is like a saddle; it’s as simple as leather, rawhide and wood but as complex as all the work that goes into carving the tree, tooling the leather, engraving the silver on the conchos and everything else in between to make a good, custom saddle. When it comes to things like Christ dying on the cross, taking the wrath for all the sins of everyone who would believe in Him on Good Friday or God raising Christ from the dead, which is what we just celebrated on Easter Sunday, it is as simple as the statements I just made and also way more complex than we could understand.

But the good news of the gospel is as simple as these passages in Romans that show us who we are, who Jesus is and why it matters that we celebrate His resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Romans 3:23

23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

We are all sinners. We have violated God’s law and because of that we are separated from God and apart from God’s grace, we are God’s enemies.

Romans 5:8

8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

While we were still haters of God, He sent Christ to take the punishment for our sins.

Romans 6:23

23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

We all deserve death for even the smallest sin we’ve committed but through faith in Christ, He takes that sin and suffered the punishment for it on the cross. Through His grace, He gives us the gift of being adopted sons and daughters of God instead of His enemies.

Romans 8:1

8 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Jesus took the punishment of all past, present and future sin for all who believe in Him. If you believe in Jesus, God has given you freedom from the punishment of your sins. This should lead us to live a life of gratitude and a desire to follow His commands.

Romans 10:9

9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

This is why we celebrate Easter because if we are Christians we do believe that God raised Jesus from the dead to prove that Jesus is who He said He was i.e. the Son of God, the second person of the trinity that came to take away the sins of all those that would believe and save sinners like you and me from an eternity suffering in Hell and by His grace giving us the gift of Easter.

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