Saturday, July 26, 2014

"Burnt Sugar"

    The greatest flavor in the world is well-prepared caramel.  I will truck no dissent concerning this Divine truth about the most glorious of gustatory realities.  Indeed, for those who agree with me, or who will today repent of contrary opinions, I will gladly send my recipes for "Glen's Candied Butter" (caramel chews, your eyes will roll back in your head), Glen's Caramel Sauce (your head will roll back onto your, well, your back), or of course, my Brown Sugar Cookies (which you may already have since I so graciously offered it in the past).  Prepare for glory, and apologies to those of you who have blood sugar issues and cannot participate (I will make it up to you with the greater truth that follows).

    As you may know, caramel is, for all practical purposes, burnt sugar, with butter and cream thrown (skillfully) into the wondrous mix.  Now the word "burnt" is actually a misnomer (unless you take the melting of the sugar too far).  You actually cook the sugar as far as possible without burning it, and one must be possessed of remarkable culinary skills (ahem!) to pull this off.  If successful, the addition of the aforementioned butter and cream unites with the sucrose to yield, again, the best flavor in the world.  A beautifully tempered sweetness results, enriched and accentuated by a deep background flavor for which I've yet to find words.  Glorious smoothness also characterizes caramel, whether in candied or sauce form (the cookies are another story).  Nothing compares, and yet another reminder - I allow no opposing opinions in Glen's World!

    Seriously, as wonderful as all this is, the aforementioned "greater truth" shines with infinitely greater brightness (and or course, sweetness).

   "Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered; and being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him" (Hebrews 5:8-9).

     How can an infinite, eternal, and already perfect Being "learn obedience" and be "made perfect?"  The answer lies in God's eternal purposes concerning the Lord Jesus Christ.  Our Heavenly Father willed that His Son become human for the purpose of redeeming us from our sins.  We could be saved in no other way because only one like unto ourselves could make atonement for the sins of humanity. "Wherefore in all things it behooved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people" (Hebrews 2:17).  Only a human Lord Jesus could serve such a loving purpose.  He had to live a life such as we live, and thus experience the learning curve the constitutes our earthly existence.  Moreover, He had to die and rise again in order to be perfected as our Savior.  Merely living a human life would not have been enough.  Our Savior had to pass through the fires of Divine wrath for our sakes in order that His personal righteousness might be available to us.  "Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us… righteousness" (I Corinthians 1:30).

    Do you see the analogy, the beautiful comparison with the first subject of this essay?  Think of it.  How often have you opened your sugar bowl, inserted a spoon, and consumed a big heaping, helping of the crystalized granules?  Yeecchhh!  Pass that sugar through the fire, however, and the cooked product (with a few additions) becomes sublimely appealing and delicious. It becomes caramel, God's gift to our taste buds.  Ponder this for a moment as the realization graces your heart that this is exactly what the Lord Jesus did for us.  Possessed of sweetness beyond all imagining, but in a form spiritually and morally unavailable to us, our Lord bore the fiery wrath of God to make accessible His sweet and wondrous presence in our hearts.  And this, my friends, is the reason God made burnt sugar, or caramel, the most delicious flavor in all the world.

"My meditation of Him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD."
(Psalm 104:34)

Weekly Memory Verse
   But this man, because He continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.
(Hebrews 7:24-25)

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