Friday, April 3, 2015

Broken Into Beautiful-Post 3

Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him.
Psalm 32:2

We have a list of house rules posted on our refridgerator:
  1. Speak kindly.
  2. Gather regularly.
  3. Laugh readily.
  4. Work cheerfully.
  5. Give generously.
  6. Apologize humbly.
  7. Forgive quickly.
  8. Hug freely.
  9. Pray frequently.
  10. Stand firmly.
  11. Cheer loudly.
  12. Love genuinely.
Simple, but purposeful, thoughtfully chosen rules that are sometimes obeyed, often broken, but always encouraged.  12 Rules.

Adam and Eve had 1 rule. 1 SIMPLE RULE. "But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die." -Genesis 2:17

Pretty clear.  Pretty basic.  Don't eat.  If you eat, you die.

Even a small amount of sin is deadly.  All sin is disobedience and the punishment for disobedience against God is death.  The fall of mankind was not caused by a piece of fruit, by an evil serpent, by a foolish woman or her foolish husband-it was caused by a heart that rebelled against God.

Ever since that fateful day in the Garden, we have been prone to sin because of our rebellious hearts.  How does my heart choose to rebel?
  • Exposing my mind to ungodly influence through mainstream media
  • Choosing to miss church.
  • Harboring anger and resentment towards others.
  • Failing to submit to my husband.
And he [the serpent] said to the woman, "Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree in the garden?'. Then the serpent said to the woman "You will not surely die.  For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
-Genesis 3:1a, 4-5 

The serpent is the fist "false prophet".  He is not overtly and obviously evil in this exchange with Eve, but he twists God's word to make us believe that we can indulge our selfish, humanistic desires and still be in the will of God.  Satan wants us to believe we can exist both in man's world and God's will simultaneously, that we can be of the world and in it.  But God's word tells us otherwise.

God sees all of my sin:
Pride, anger, gossip, bitterness, refusal to forgive, unconfessed sin, unhealthy habits, questionable television programs, and all of the other failures I try desperately to hide.
Yet He lovingly invites me to come out of hiding so he can clean up my messes (and trust me, there are many of them!).

The account of the adulterous woman in John 8:4-12 is a clear example of God's willingness, desire even, to clean up our messes.
"This account of the adulterous woman teaches us a valuable lesson about judging and condemning others.  We shouldn't do it.  It's not appropriate and it's not our place." -Gwen Smith
God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might be come the righteousness of God. 
-2 Corinthians 5:21-
As we approach this Easter Sunday, I am wholly convinced that God is a God of loving forgiveness.  He is fully aware of all of our transgressions, and because of that-not in spite of it-He sacrificed his most prized possession of all, His Son, Jesus Christ.  This is the ultimate illustration of broken into beautiful!  We were broken in sin and because of Christ's sacrifice on the cross we are restored to beauty and are able to triumph over death!
"The heart of the human problem is the heart of the human.  And God's treatment is prescribed in John 3:16." -Max Lucado
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
-John 3:16-