Thursday, October 19, 2017

A Study in Contrasts

Let me give you a brief study in contrasts. The first part sounds negative, horrible, and comes across as a downer. Yet, it is our reality; it also makes the second part all the more wonderful and marvelous.

The first part of the contrast comes from Hebrews 4:13. ‘Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before God’s eyes.’ Included in the ‘nothing’ is our sin. The Bible defines sin as “missing the mark.” Anytime we miss the mark of God’s perfection that qualifies as a sin in God’s eyes.

Let me break that down in terms we can understand:
  • We think something that God would never think. Sin.
  • We look at something God would never look at. Sin.
  • We say something God would never say. Sin.
  • We don’t do or say something God would do or say. Sin.
  • We look at a person in a way God would never view a person. Sin.
  • We treat our spouse, children, grandchildren, and friends in an uncaring or unloving way. Sin.
  • We act like somebody we’re not. Sin.
  • We react in fear instead of trust. Sin.
  • We lie, cheat, or steal. Sin.
  • We act selfishly. Sin.
Depressing isn’t it? Honestly, if I were God, and I’m glad I’m not, I would be fed up with me. I would say, “Mark is a mess. He just keeps on sinning and sinning. What am I going to do with this guy?” Well, let’s get the second part, the best part of the contrast. This contrast is taken from Psalm 94:18 “When I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’ your unfailing love, Lord, you supported me.”

Our Savior says:
  • They’re broken, but I can work with that since I’m bigger than their defects.
  • They failed me, but they’re forgiven.
  • They’ve got a long way to grow, but I will never give up on them.
  • They are a mess sometimes, but they are my mess and my children, and the apple of my eye.
  • They are forgiven because they trusted in my final work on the cross and resurrection, and will never be more forgiven than they are right now.
  • They are already loved, and will never be more loved than I love them at this very moment.
Wow! Isn’t that great? Doesn’t that fill your heart with joy? It does mine. I still need to grow. I still need to change. Becoming more like Jesus is always the goal; saying no to sin should always be my desire. But how great to know that nothing separates me from God and His love!

“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today or our worries about tomorrow- not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below- indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Pastor Mark "The Bru" Brunott

P.S. In today’s culture, we are surrounded with opportunities to be alone. But is this what Christ desires for us? Join us Sunday at 9:15 or 11 AM to discover why we should pursue real community.

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