Wanted Dead but Alive

“For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:19-20 (KJV, emphasis added)
 
As a six year old, Saturday morning Western TV programs walked my heart and mind into the world of the Colt .45, sheriffs, marshals, outlaws, stagecoaches, the Iron Horse (trains),cattle rustlers and gunfights. One of my favorite shows was the Rifleman with Chuck Conners. His character was Lucas McCain, the Rifleman. The outlaws always found themselves outgunned by the Rifleman’s rifle!  There were other great Westerns that grab our attention and imagination such as Bonanza, the Virginian, High Chaparral, Big Valley and Gunsmoke. All of these great old Westerns ignited our imaginations to tour the world of the Old West.  
 
But for our blog this week I wanted to turn your attention to another classic western with the man who put the “C” in cool: Steve McQueen in Wanted Dead or Alive. The main character Josh Randall played by Steve McQueen was a bounty hunter.  His dependable and state of the art weapon of choice was called a mare’s leg. It was a modified Winchester rifle with a reduced stock and a barrel cut down to less than a foot long which allowed Randall to carry it holstered on his hip. So with swift speed and cowboy swagger Randall sought out law-breakers. The bad guys did not have a chance!
 
Our text turns our minds and hearts to what Paul pointed out referencing a different type of law, the law of God. Paul states that through the law, he died to the law. God’s law demanded death for those who broke it, but Christ paid that death penalty for all sinners. Therefore, the law killed Him and thereby joined those to Him by faith, freeing them to be joined to another, to live for God. In essence, God wants us dead to the law but alive in Christ.
 
John Randall was a bounty hunter that brought in fugitives of the law. Jesus became a fugitive and was brought in to pay the penalty that the law demanded from a Holy God. His death on the cross canceled out the bounty on our heads (death) and thereby made us alive. If you live to keep the law you are a wanted fugitive. But by living by faith in Christ you are alive and no longer a fugitive but a free man!

For the Glory of God,

PBKSR