Undeserving. (part two)

Let’s think about the previous post. The son felt that because of all he did, he didn’t deserve to be considered his father’s son. Wait. When did he deserve to ever be son? What did he do to be a son? He was born!

How many of you are in that same position. You’ve messed up. You’ve hurt people. Turned your back on God. Blamed Him for your life. Wanted all the good stuff from Him, but no responsibility. How many of you have felt that you aren’t deserving of a second chance? What did you do to ever deserve a chance in the first place? God doesn’t give us what we deserve.

Allow me to set a scene. Close your eyes and imagine this… well… After you read the scene you can. If you did it before you read then it would be impossible to read what you are to imagine. Sidetracked. Anyway…

 You are standing at the foot of a hill. The atmosphere is dry and hot, and filled with a sense of bitter anticipation. You are looking down at your feet and amidst the dry soil, you see a trail of blood. Following the trail, you see roman soldiers around three different crosses. There is people all around muttering to each other. No tears, but an ironic hostility. You follow the trail and notice that this hostility is directed only to one of the men laying on a cross. However, you can’t even tell he is a man based on his appearance. His feet fused to the cross by a rusted nail, the size of a railroad spike. Beaten, battered, skin literally hanging off of him. His arms outstretched with a nail piercing each hand. A wreath made of three inch thorns appear to be shoved down upon his head. The act of those thorns being thrust so forcibly on his head had literally split the skin. You have never seen anything so hideous, so bloody, you turn your head and gag at the very stench of his diseased, rotting flesh. Yet, he is still alive. The soldiers raise the cross to which he has been nailed to and his body sags down. In order for him to continue breathing, he must pull himself up with his nail pierced hands. All his strength is fading fast. As the shock of this site continues, you hear shouting. “If you are really God save yourself.” “You’re a fake.” “I hate you.” “You mean nothing.” “He healed others, let him heal himself.” 

People are spitting on him, kicking dirt at him.  “What did this man do?!” You ask. Nothing. He did this for you. What did you do to deserve such a sacrifice? When this man was on the cross, he thought of you. This man who had all the power to walk off that cross stayed on it, for you. Why? So you could experience what the son in the last blog experienced. Unearned, undeserved forgiveness. What have you been forgiven of? Any wrong you’ve ever done or ever will do.  What did the son have to do to get forgiveness from his father? Nothing. All he had to do was accept that forgiveness.

God doesn’t give us what we deserve, but what was purchased for us through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When you accept the price that Jesus paid, ALL of heaven has a party in your name! Why? Because you were lost but are found. You were dead, but through Christ you are live. Because of Jesus, you never have to be separated from God. That is why God throws the party! 

Love.

I can’t tell you how many times I have attempted at writing my FIRST BLOG. Probably because I put so much pressure on myself. It was as if I wanted it to be THE BEST, or at least good enough for people to want to read. All that came out of my “high pressure” writing sessions were about three lines that could easily be seen as fabricated wisdom and scripted originality. Those two things aren’t worth the time writing nor reading. 

To be honest, I almost jumped in to that same style, figuring out what to title this post as. Which is why you see a 4 lettered word with a period. I was going for simplicity. I say that because I want you to appreciate me not wasting your time by rambling on… As I ramble on about not wanting to ramble…

Love produces life. I was reading in 1 John today (a book in the BIble kind of towards the end). In it, I found an interesting statement. In chapter three of 1 John and verse 14, the author talks about a man who does not love. He said “he who does not love abides (is kept continually) in death.

Now, I always like to take a positive approach at things and that’s what I did with this passage. Since death is the product of the lack of love, it stands to reason that love produces  life. 

There is a very popular passage in the Bible that is says “for God so LOVED the world that He gave is only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish (die) but have everlasting LIFE. (John 3:16- caps mine)

Out of love, life is produced.  In the passage above we see that God LOVED. Who did He love? Us. The world. What was the product? God giving His Son to bring us LIFE. 

Jesus couldn’t just come in to the world and not do anything. He was God’s gift of love. Looking at the life of Christ, that’s what He did. Jesus loved. The greatest act of love was Jesus giving His life for us. Jesus lived a sinless life, died on a cross and was raised back to life three days later. There are several interesting characteristics of Jesus, but the one that is the greatest is His love for us. 

The product of the greatest act of love was life. The cost of that product was death. It cost Jesus His life to give us life. 

If you want to produce life in others, you must die to yourself. How? First let’s look at the opposite of love… Selfishness. Selfishness is the enemy of love.  Living a SELFLESS life is a life that produces true life. We are to lay down our own lives. Not how Jesus did on the cross, but with our daily choices. Jesus esteemed us greater than Himself. He put us first. As you put others first. Life will be produced. 

CHALLENGE: Love people more than yourself. Put them first. Do it to someone who hasn’t done anything to “deserve” it.

Scripture: 1 John 3:16

By this we come to know love: That He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for others.