Friday, November 11, 2011

Part 2 of Rotten Egg in the Omelet

I've left you hanging and hopefully pondering long enough. Let's get back to our rotten egg in the omelet illustration. And please remember that it's only an illustration. Real truth, in my opinion, is only obtained by a careful study of the Scriptures, God's Word. (II Timothy 3:16 says, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness...")

So what did you think? Does God weigh the good we have done against the bad and judge whether we are worthy to be allowed into His presence? You probably already guessed that I am going to say, "No." Let me explain why.

The Scriptures are full of references to the fact that we have all sinned; no one is righteous, not even one of us. The most well known reference is in Romans 3:23. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." And in I John 1:8 it says, "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us."

In the beginning, Adam and Eve lived in a perfect world but given free choice to walk in fellowship and communion with their creator, they chose disobedience (sin) and walked away from that perfect fellowship. You may say, "Wait a minute! Adam and Eve? Give me a break!" OK, would you have made the choice not to disobey, especially when tempted into believing that you would become like God and have the knowledge of good and evil just by eating the forbidden fruit? I submit to you that if it hadn't been Eve, it would have been someone else and sin would have entered the world sooner or later.

BUT God is merciful and loving. The only way to exercise perfect justice was to condemn sin - in other words, all came under condemnation. Romans 6:23a says, "...the wages of sin is death." Because we all sin, we all deserve the just wage of sin; death. Without going into great detail, let me just submit to you that the death God refers to here is spiritual death, not actual physical death, and the best way to sum that up is to equate spiritual death with separation from God - as though a chasm separates man from God. (I'm being very simplistic - whole books have been written to explain this, yet it is simple enough for even a young child to understand.)

So if the wages of sin is death or to get back to the omelet illustration, throwing out the eggs with the rotten one that contaminates the whole bunch, then someone has to die; someone has to pay that death penalty. That's where God's love shines - "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8). Most of us have heard that often enough that it doesn't really sink in. What God did on the cross was this: "...He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us," (II Corinthians 5:21a). The penalty we deserved, God placed upon His Son, Jesus, calling Him unrighteous who was completely and totally righteous. Why? "That we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (II Corinthians 5:21b).

There is a lengthy passage of Scripture in Ephesians 2 starting with verse 4 that explains why God did this. It also explains how the good we do is a result of God's mercy and grace toward us. It is the effect and not the cause. Religious systems would want us to believe that we can do enough good to please God, but God says He is the one who took the first step to reconcile us to himself in Christ, resulting in a total inner transformation of the heart (like throwing out the rotten egg mixture). He gives us a completely new beginning and  even still is gracious and merciful to forgive us when we confess the sins we commit after trusting Him for salvation. Let me quote the Ephesians passage here:
But God who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. and not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them." (Ephesians 2:4-10 - italics are mine.)
Hallelujah! I, for one, am very glad He loved me that much. But the best part is that because we all start on a level playing field - all of us condemned sinners, we all have the same access to Him based on what Jesus did on the cross. The only requirement is to believe that what He did was sufficient and to accept His gift of life. His aloha is forever!

1 comment:

  1. Sharon,

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts.