Topic: Sin / Redemption
Author: Larry Ely (Student Ministries)
When Disney released the Mandalorian, our family was excited! The four of us crammed onto the couches in the game room, and ate dinner in front of the TV to watch each new episode as it was released. Quickly, quotes from the show like “This is the way”, “I have spoken”, and renditions of baby Yoda filled our conversation. The storyline was compelling as we watched the journey of one bounty hunter unfold through claiming his targets, making allies, earning his armor, facing betrayal, and finding new purpose.
Essentially, bounty hunters are paid to kill or capture high value targets and bring them in. “I can bring you in warm or I can bring you in cold,” Mando said to one of his blue alien bounties. It’s pretty much the sci-fi version of the wild west and being wanted dead or alive, but when Mando says it in a gruff voice from under his Beskar helmet you know he means business.
With an array of powerful weapons at his disposal, Mando makes quick work of his bounties. He has his standard energy pistol, an impressive explosive sniper rifle, a metal grappling cable, a combat knife, and a flame thrower. He later earns a jetpack with a rocket launcher, a fun new addition called “whistling birds” which are mini tracking missiles that the mysterious forge master the Armorer grants him as a reward, and last but not least he acquires a solid Beskar metal bow staff. All in all, this is one tough bounty hunter, and you better hope that he isn’t hunting you.
In an early episode, the Mandalorian enters a remote outpost, drops several tracking devices on the table, and collects his bounty from Greef Karga (a member of the Guild). Mando proves his elite bounty hunting status as multiple bounties frozen in carbonite are unloaded from his ship. As he asks for more holographic bounty pucks, you get the sense that Mando is to be feared and you don’t want to be his next bounty.
In a similar way, we all have a bounty on our heads. Not a physical bounty of a dollar amount, but a spiritual bounty of a blood payment. The Bible says that humanity’s crime is that we all sin. We all have an inherent sinful nature that disobeys and rebels against God. As a result, our sin brings with it a spiritual death penalty. In a strange way, we are all being hunted by the spiritual forces of evil seeking to accuse us, capture us, and condemn us to a life without God; a life imprisoned in sin.
Because of God’s perfect justice, our sin demands a pure blood payment: either our own which is inadequate or a sinless perfect substitute. Because of God’s great love, He made a way to free us from our sin and paid off the bounty on our heads by sending a hero to rescue us. This hero sacrificed Himself in order to save us and satisfied the blood payment that was due for each of us. Jesus is the hero of the story and by putting our faith in Him and accepting his death on the cross as payment for our sin we are forgiven, pardoned, and set free.
- “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” -Romans 3:23 (NLT)
- “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” -1 Peter 5:8 (NLT)
- “We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.” -Romans 3:22 (NLT)
- “Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood….” -Romans 3:24-25a (NLT)
While I like the Mandalorian series and found myself cheering for Mando on his quests, bounty hunters are often an unsavory bunch of scoundrels doing some very distasteful things. However, you and I have had our own distasteful moments in life as well. In the end, we are all a bunch of scoundrels in need of redemption.
Thoughts to Consider:
- How have your own sinful actions, thoughts, and choices kept you from connecting with God?
- How have the spiritual forces of evil tried to attack you, accuse you, and condemn you?
- Jesus paid off your bounty with his own life, but have you accepted His payment by asking Him to forgive your sins and by putting your faith in Him?
- Are you truly living in the freedom and forgiveness of your new life in Christ, or are you living in fear and frustration as if a bounty is still on your head?
*Text: © 2021 Amplify Ministries, Image: © Disney