February 6, 2018: The Greatest Three Letter Word

Ephesians 2:4-5 (NIV)
4  But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,
5  made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions–it is by grace you have been saved.

Romans 5:6-8 (NIV)
6  You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
7  Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die.
8  But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

 

“Hopeless, ruined, dead in sins and transgressions, objects of wrath by nature.”  Not great words of comfort, huh? Yet this is the truth about us before Christ redeemed us.  How can any hope ever come out of such statements?  O that my dear friend is where the truth and power and beauty of the Gospel shine most brilliantly.  God does his best work among the most ruined. He has come to call the sinner to repentance.  He has come to rescue the lost not redeemed the perfect.  He delights to show mercy, he loves to display his grace, he longs to be known as the redeemer of the lost and the ruined.

Feel you are too far gone for God to redeem, then you qualify.  Overwhelmed by the weight of your sin and rebellion, you get in.  Can’t stay the course in your fight against sin, you have been selected for rescue.

2 Samuel 14:14 (NIV)
14  Like water spilled on the ground, which cannot be recovered, so we must die. But God does not take away life; instead, he devises ways so that a banished person may not remain estranged from him.

God is not like a man, who selects based on performance.  He selects based on how ruined and wrecked the objects of his redemption are. If you have been ruined by sin and find yourself in despair, cheer up, on your feet, He is calling you. He is the father who throws wide his arms to receive the prodigal who can barely take another step.  He is the father who longs to be gracious to you and rises to show you compassion.  Go ahead and run to him and you find all this is true and more.

Our hope is found in the one word penned by the Apostle Paul, “But . . .”  Objects of wrath . . . But…”  Your story has just begun, run to him right now and find his mercy and grace.

Abiding under the fountain of his mercy,

 

 

Pastor Phil

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