Passover

The table is set before you
As you are guided to your seat.
The invigorating aroma of delightful food
Oh, how excited you are to eat!
The table is set formally,
But you frown as you have not dressed as such
Will you be given the same food?
Or just not quite as much?

You look around at some of the guests
With their façade of makeup and coverings
As pigs with pearls in their snouts
You know you aren’t as becoming.
Will you be moved to another seat, yet another place?
Is this seat a mistake?
Isn’t your place with the dogs
Who beg for food from plates?

However, you do not fear
For you know the owner of this table!
He does not play favorites, He loves us all
And welcomes the willing and able.
For He gave you a ticket,
An invitation,
To come to His majestic table.
And that ticket is your justification
So that you will not be mislabeled.

How many are here without a ticket?
Do they not know the hour is coming?
Or are they deaf to reason and logic
That this table did not come from nothing!

Oh, you try to bridge a conversation
To a person without a ticket
They respond,  “Oh, gosh! You are antiquated!
There will not be any condemnation!”
How do you know and are you sure?
That is what you ask
They respond, “Because there are no rights or wrongs!
It is just cultures that make moral statements.”
You ask, for which culture is forward, which one is backward?
Which one is going the right way?
They scowl and turn their face
And then tell you to go away.

Then the overhead light flickers
The owner has come home!
Some guests seem not to even notice
The majesty of His throne.
Nothing we do compares to His holiness
No grandiose coverings will due
For the Lord knows the depths
Of our moral turpitude.
So the meal is set before you,
It is the Passover lamb
Your invitation then turns to blood
And you know that you can stand.

But for those who are at the table
Sitting in their relativistic worldview stance
What will they say to the owner?
Are they willing to take that chance?

 

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Don’t Drink the Water!

WaterinGlassYou’re good.  I’m good.  We all are good! Why wouldn’t God want us to be in Heaven with him?  Who wouldn’t want more of you or me?! We are that good! But, Hitler? Not good. Just ask a random person if they think Hitler is in hell and they’ll say yes.  Then ask them if they are going there.  Nope! Poor Hitler!

What if Hitler only caused the deaths of 100 Jews? Still in hell? 10 Jews? 1 Jew? How about he just held on to the ‘final solution’ as exhorted in his book Mein Kampf? Still then?  Where is the line I ask between the trajectory toward hell or heaven?  In Jesus’ sermon on the mount (Matthew 5-7) Jesus indicates that even harboring adulterous or hateful thoughts is condemnable, that is, sinful.  Looks like I am out!

It seems our relativistic culture has a problem.  There is a tendency to overestimate our own righteousness while underestimating God’s.  He sees our heart for what it truly desires and the unnatural bent we really have!  You can try to bend it back but it doesn’t erase it completely.  It takes God’s intervention to cure that; a true final solution (Phil 1:6).

God loves us, but hates the dysfunctional bent that we harbor in our hearts.  Now, of course you don’t have ‘this’ bent!  Hitler did, but of course, not you.

Let’s suppose that you came into my office and I offer you a fresh glass of water.

“Before you drink from that cup, can I urinate in it?” I ask.

“No way!” You reply.

“It’ll only be a little bit, you won’t even be able to see it!” I retort.

“No thanks!” You reply.

“How about I urinate in the cup just a little bit and then dump the water out and fill it back up?” I ask again.

“I’ll pass.”

This is how God views our sin.  The water (us) He loves.  It’s just the urination He can do without!

We all fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23) and the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). However, He sent His son not to condemn us but to save us (John 3:16).  He took the punishment on himself instead (1 Pet 2:24) and if we accept that free gift (Romans 10:13-14) then He’ll change our bent with His own hands (2 Cor 5:17).

And as a result of His grace God views my glass of water as pure (2 Cor 5:21).