It amazes me at the correspondence I get from the blog postings. The way God has opened up doors for ministry has been rather phenomenal. Just today I was responding to several communications specific to the concept of Salvation. Then, low and behold, my daily study takes me to Romans 5, a passage that talks about what it means to be acceptable to God.
Becoming acceptable to God is part of the perception problem we must overcome. We assume we can become this special person or come to this place where we deserve of Gods’ love, or at the very least, God’s acceptance.
There are many concepts about God I don’t know; I will gladly admit that, after all, I’m not God. There are some things I have come to understand over the years though. Some are, God is perfect, holy, jealous, and yet, loving. It is the perfect and holy part I’ll touch on today.
I often use an analogy that offends some folks. I ask the question: “Ever been working out really hard and really desire a cold glass of water?” Then I ask, “How much manure or sewage would have to be in the cup of water before you refuse to drink it?” I have never heard anyone say any amount of sewage was acceptable. In fact, they make it clear, even the smallest miniscule amount of sewage keeps the water from being pure. I then state; “That’s how it is with our sin. God is like that pure glass of pure water, perfect in every way. Even the smallest amount of sin keeps us from being at the place where Gods’ holiness can maintain its purity and goodness. There is however a perfect filtration system that keeps the water pure, even though we may not start out that way. The purification system is Jesus. Jesus can take all of the crap about us, all of the things that make us undesirable, and when our sins are filtered through Christ, we become pure to God and thus he can maintain his holiness and purity, while having us in his presence. Not because of what we have done, but because of what Christ has done in purifying us.”
Read Romans 5 for yourself, included here in the Contemporary English Version to see that analogy put in its original form.
(1) By faith we have been made acceptable to God. And now, because of our Lord Jesus Christ, we live at peace with God. (2) Christ has also introduced us to God's undeserved kindness on which we take our stand. So we are happy, as we look forward to sharing in the glory of God. (3) But that's not all! We gladly suffer, because we know that suffering helps us to endure. (4) And endurance builds character, which gives us a hope (5) that will never disappoint us. All of this happens because God has given us the Holy Spirit, who fills our hearts with his love.
(6) Christ died for us at a time when we were helpless and sinful. (7) No one is really willing to die for an honest person, though someone might be willing to die for a truly good person. (8) But God showed how much he loved us by having Christ die for us, even though we were sinful.
(9) But there is more! Now that God has accepted us because Christ sacrificed his life's blood, we will also be kept safe from God's anger. (10) Even when we were God's enemies, he made peace with us, because his Son died for us. Yet something even greater than friendship is ours. Now that we are at peace with God, we will be saved by his Son's life. (11) And in addition to everything else, we are happy because God sent our Lord Jesus Christ to make peace with us.
(12) Adam sinned, and that sin brought death into the world. Now everyone has sinned, and so everyone must die. (13) Sin was in the world before the Law came. But no record of sin was kept, because there was no Law. (14) Yet death still had power over all who lived from the time of Adam to the time of Moses. This happened, though not everyone disobeyed a direct command from God, as Adam did.
In some ways Adam is like Christ who came later. (15) But the gift that God was kind enough to give was very different from Adam's sin. That one sin brought death to many others. Yet in an even greater way, Jesus Christ alone brought God's gift of kindness to many people.
(16) There is a lot of difference between Adam's sin and God's gift. That one sin led to punishment. But God's gift made it possible for us to be acceptable to him, even though we have sinned many times. (17) Death ruled like a king because Adam had sinned. But that cannot compare with what Jesus Christ has done. God has been so kind to us, and he has accepted us because of Jesus. And so we will live and rule like kings.
(18) Everyone was going to be punished because Adam sinned. But because of the good thing that Christ has done, God accepts us and gives us the gift of life. (19) Adam disobeyed God and caused many others to be sinners. But Jesus obeyed him and will make many people acceptable to God.
(20) The Law came, so that the full power of sin could be seen. Yet where sin was powerful, God's kindness was even more powerful. (21) Sin ruled by means of death. But God's kindness now rules, and God has accepted us because of Jesus Christ our Lord. This means that we will have eternal life.
The truth is, none of us can do anything to deserve knowing God or deserving of Heaven. However, Christ can do it for us. He can be our purification system. I know that many will think the blog today is for those that don't know Christ, and part of it is. However, we all need reminding of the fact, that on our own, unplugged from the purifier, we are dirty. We all need Christ, and his help. That process isn’t difficult but it is one we need reminded of. For some of us, it means buying into the system, for others, it might mean just turning the purifier back on because it is already there. What you do, and where you are at is up to you. Been working hard? Times tough? Think about it, God is thirsty, and you are his cup of water, want to give Him something He desires? He’s made away, it’s up to you what you do.
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