Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sin and Rebellion leads to pain and defeat. Jesus is the true deliverer.

Joshua, a great leader has just led the people of God to the promise land and they are starting to come into the nation, Joshua led with courage and then he died. He wanted the people to drive out the enemy completely. The enemies of God are those people who worshiped other gods. But instead of being drastic with sin, instead of being drastic with idolatry, they make room for it, they embrace it, they become friends with it and for the next few hundred years throughout the book of judges that continues to plague them.We see this pattern where the people turn their backs on God, to worship other gods and idols. (Judges 2.11, 3.7, 3.12, 4.1, 6.1, 10.6, 13.1)  So God lets them Go in their own way and they are given over to captivity.Then we see this pattern where they would cry out to God, God would feel moved to pity by their groaning, and would send a judge: someone who liberates the oppressed, someone who brings freedom from captivity. This cycle continues through the entire book of Judges and when  the judge died the Israelite's would get worse then when they started.

He simply reminds them what once again been forgotten what had once again been discarded.He reminds them that he was the one who brought them from egypt and delivered them from slavery of the egyptians. He was the one who delivered and led them into promise land. He was the cloud by day, pillar of fire by night. He was the one who chose, protected , provided, and loved loved them.Blood was shed for them and now they are flirting with other men (gods). He is their husband and they have walked away from him. He is a jealous God and will not embrace tolerance for other gods.
They continue to cry out to him because of their affliction and their oppression but the main problem isn't the oppression, but baalism. The solution should not be to get rid of their oppression The solution to get the heart right. Their heart is depraved and they are desperately in need of a new one. The physical oppression and captivity is only a shadow and symbol of their spiritual oppression and slavery. The Physical judges are just a shadow of a better one. They were not Israels saviors and could not bring ultimate peace. They are unworthy sinners who fall short. God sends them as a sign that he will bring peace, by his mercy and grace, to people who did not deserve it.

Israel is longing for justice that only God can bring.The only way to bring an end to hostility and enmity in the world is to bring an end to the source of hostility and enmity, namely, sin. Ultimate peace found in Jesus, not sinful, human, judges. Humanity can not live in right relationship with God. Our hearts would never choose him. This is creating a longing for someone else, some great, someone true. Jesus.While we are still in our sin, and rebellion. God sends a deliverer. His name is Jesus. We deserve punishment, we deserve oppression, we deserve hell and we’ve turned our backs from him and have run away. We chose to become enemies.

God is loving and compassionate and sends someone to intervene for us. He sends himself. Jesus lives perfectly, we kill him, and he rises again sending his spirit to live inside of us, given us a new and regenerated heart, so that we can and will obey and live in right relationship with him.  The atonement brought us peace. There is a cost to sin and rebellion and that is the loss of peace and only God can give and be our peace.

He is the true deliverer who does it perfectly, he is the true deliverer that we long and await.On the cross he crushes sin, satan death and hell. He is the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world making peace by his blood.  Jesus is the true sacrifice. Because of His sacrifice on your behalf, God has given you infinite favor, you are at peace with God. He took your punishment, and gave you his righteousness. They longed for peace and One day in the full presence of Jesus peace will be complete.
A friend and mentor of mine says "you have real potential... to screw your life up" and I think he is right. Christian, remember Christ and what he has done. Believe his finished work and your identity in him and let that motivate and fuel you to godliness. Don't forget it. Write it down. Remember it. Receive it. Embrace it, and Preach it to yourself daily.

Sin is deep, His grace is Deeper.