2002-05-16 - For All Who Will Come
What is the state of mankind? Humanity has reached out and touched the Moon. We have sent robotic probes to visit many of the planets in our solar system. We have developed computers that can do more computations per second and store more data than our minds can readily comprehend. We have improved the physical, mental and emotional health of the planet. Some have made it their business to take the relief of medicine and science to distant cultures in desperate need. We have conquered diseases that formerly ravaged our populations. Many would have us hold our heads up high. This is not to say that these accomplishments are not noteworthy in one regard.
But God deals with our salvation and our spirit. In his letter to the Christians in Rome, Paul puts our state into the focus of God's view.
Rom 3:9-17 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all; for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin; 10 as it is written, "There is none righteous, not even one; 11 There is none who understands, There is none who seeks for God; 12 All have turned aside, together they have become useless; There is none who does good, There is not even one. " 13 "Their throat is an open grave, With their tongues they keep deceiving," "The poison of asps is under their lips"; 14 "Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness"; 15 "Their feet are swift to shed blood, 16 Destruction and misery are in their paths, 17 And the path of peace have they not known. " 18 There is no fear of God before their eyes." (NAS)
He decries our state. He understands the devastating effects of sin on the human race. It may have entered into humanity through Adam and Eve, but like a misformed chromosome, it has been passed down through the generations even down to today. This is not to say that there are not good people with great giving hearts and minds. But look down through the ages. In the last 4,000 years of recorded history there are less than 100 years in which there was not a war somewhere on the planet. The deceit and cloak and dagger of politics has created the most ironic of alliances.
During World War II, the German government interned the Jews and slew them by the millions, the Japanese did leave dissections of Chinese prisoners to study the effects of germs and viruses on the human body, the Americans interned Japanese Americans and though they were not wantonly slaughtered, they were very often far from properly cared for as charges of the state, and the British and Americans bombed several major cities to the point of utter devastation with untold civilian casualties.
This is a small sample of the state of humanity. Regardless of the various attempts to dignify mankind, we are still very lacking. As a race, we do not respect the warnings that God has given us, not unlike a loving parent. But like stubborn children we have to touch the stove to see if it really is hot. The Bible tells us that humankind is, by our nature, at odds with the rule of God over our lives. Even though God has our best interests at heart, we refuse His guidance and at times His existence. Is the new all dark and bleak?
Rom 5:1-5 Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; 4 and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; 5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (NAS)
When we could not help ourselves, when the debt was too deep for us to pay - God paid it with the blood of Jesus Christ. The price was prescribed as a blood sacrifice in the Law given to Moses. By faith we accept the perfect sacrifice of Christ. In His death the price of sin was paid for all who will come. In his resurrection the power of sin and death were crushed and the door to Heaven was reopened - to all who will come and acknowledge their sin - their imperfection in their thoughts, hearts and minds. Any who will simply ask for His forgiveness and place their lives under His rule will find grace and mercy - undeserved favor and forgiveness - and the promise of eternal life with the Father, the Son and the Spirit Who reached out to humanity because of their condition and inability to help themselves.
The news is good! For anyone with a broken heart and anyone with a load they can not carry one step further the news is good. Righteous judgment of sin has been set aside and grace and forgiveness are available - to all who will come.
John 3:16-18 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. 17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him. 18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (NAS)
Lord Jesus - You have paid the price, you have made the way simple as humility and suffering in exchange for love and forgiveness. To know that in this vast Universe that You created, You know who I am and that You cared enough to die for me so that I could be with You forever astounds me. Thank you.
Grace & Peace,