Wednesday, July 5, 2017

How to Get Away with the "Perfect Crime"!

"The perfect crime"is the carrot on a stick that seems to motivate the criminals that CSI and other detective shows work to capture.  The suspect always has this deluded sense that the crime will not have consequences.  It always does.
Likewise, the drug addict or the alcoholic thinks that he can stop whenever he wants to, but it never happens that way.  The wife beater, who later promises never to do it again, only returns to his habitual pattern the next time he gets upset.  The man trapped by sexual pornography doesn't think it owns him, but step by step his whole attitude about women and his relationships get corroded with lust and guilt.  A man reaps what he sows.

Sowing and reaping is one of the eternal laws, stronger and more reliable than gravity, that God established in the beginning.  Adam's disobedience had lasting consequences which still plague mankind and the world today.  The introductory explanation to sowing and reaping in Galatains 6:7, "Be not deceived, God is not mocked," provides the foundational reason: God.  Does He, who made the eye to see and the ear to hear, not see and hear all?  He knows every thought and intent of the heart.

Most people who are involved in sin, whether they are willing to call it sin or not, have an excuse and blame someone else.  Perhaps this started with Adam blaming God for his sin by giving the excuse "It was the woman YOU gave me." and Eve blaming it on the snake.  Or Cain challenging God, "Am I my brother's keeper?" rather than admit he killed Abel.  The greatest challenge to prideful human nature is to admit "I was wrong."  It takes a measure of supernatural grace, honesty, and courage to acknowledge this.  No wonder God repeatedly addresses his people, "Be strong," or "Take courage," or "Fear not," when He invites us to repent and believe He is willing to forgive and to intervene.

"He who humbles himself will be exalted" is the conclusion Jesus gave after telling the story of the proud Pharisee and the penitent publican that went into the temple to pray. (Luke 18:9-14)   The point is that God, as revealed in Isaiah 30:18, is waiting to be merciful toward you.  What is He waiting for?  For you to acknowledge your own wrong choice, your responsibility in what you have done wrong, and accept that the only perfect way out is to let Jesus die for the sin and His blood wash you clean. 

God sent Jesus not to judge (us) the world, but to give Himself to pay the price for sin once for all.  He has already paid the high price, his very life, so you and I can not only be free, but He actually makes a promise that seems too good to be true, we become the righteousness of God.  God is not mocked, all sin will be paid for justly.  Either Jesus takes the consequences and we go free, or we proudly refuse to admit our wrong and we suffer the consequences forever.  God sets before us Life or Death.  He then encourages us to "Choose Life."  This is the greatest Good News man could ever hear: It is finished!  Jesus paid it all.  So great is this truth that it rightfully should be The Headline on every Internet site, every television news, every newspaper in the world.  Perhaps this amazing truth is summarized by the best known (and maybe least understood) Scripture in the world: " For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."  Do you see how the heart of God does not want anyone to perish, but rather to receive what Jesus has done, and live free of the consequences forever?

God honors both what is in our heart and on our lips.  However, we do have the power to choose and put something in our heart.  When we admit our wrong and are willing to believe that Jesus paid the price, that is our heart.  The second step, according to Romans 10:8-13, then is to be willing to declare that choice out loud with our lips, inviting Him to take over and be Lord of your new life. 

Therefore, I invite you to honestly admit your sin or wrong decisions, receive Jesus' consequences, and say the following prayer to settle this crucial choice:  Thank you, Jesus, for taking the consequences for my sins by dying on the cross and shedding your blood for me.  I believe you rose from the dead, paying completely for every sin I have ever committed.  In response to You and your love for me, I willingly choose to receive your forgiveness and give my life to you by declaring "Jesus, You are my Lord" forever.    


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