Sunday, April 16, 2017

The Deeper the Cost, The Greater the Prize

We, like many grieving parents, wondered what sin we committed in the past that prompted God’s removal of our son Micah from our lives. Other parents come with a sense of self-righteousness, believing that because they had previously been faithful to God, God had no “right” to take a child from them. Both lines of thinking are really a self-centered, self-created form of righteousness, a type of righteousness that God clearly does not ascribe to. Throughout the Old Testament, God uses the law to show how distinctly different (“Holy”) He is. Our human inclination, to every fiber of our being, is bent upon making ourselves dependent on ourselves, to make what few things we can do relatively well as the epicenter of a self-created system of righteousness. The death of Christ is the demonstration that our greatest works are completely insufficient to bring us into relationship with God. Pastor Tim Keller says, “We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.” The good news of the Gospel is that our earthly circumstances are not the result of a transaction with God based upon our performance, about us fulfilling some set of rules. Rather, our relationship with God has been set permanently by the blood of Christ on the Cross. The Apostle Paul says, “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.” Colossians 2:13-14. God will glorify Himself through us, and the lives of our children, living and deceased, and in Him now we can take the utmost joy. The more we understand the cost that Jesus paid for us, the more appreciation we have for the prize we have in our salvation in Christ. We pray that on this Easter, you would take great joy in God.

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