Have you ever been faced with an impossible task? What about an impossible person? In our life, we will be faced with many very hard and challenging cases, and some may even feel absolutely hopeless.
A coworker who is belligerent against the truths of the Gospel, our current political leadership, and even some family members can seem like lost causes. We reason, “they will never come to Christ” or “It is impossible for that person to get saved.”
Throughout history there have been those who have decreed Jesus to be one thing or another. Some have asserted that He was simply a good moral man. Still others attest that He was a martyr for a political, religious, and ethical cause. Some have even said that Jesus simply did not exist, or if He did was greatly exaggerated. Many believe, as I do, that Christ was not just a moral man, or a martyr, but indeed was God Himself dying for the sins of all humanity. In the end, it doesn’t matter what others think about Jesus, it matters what you believe.
The saddest result of sin is the shame it brings to the Lord.
Sin produces so much evil, death, and destruction. When judgment for sin comes, it is devastating. Relationships can be crushed, reputation lost, and the price is always more than the transgressor thought it would be. If you want to know the price for sin, just think on Hell, the place eternal judgment takes place to pay for transgressions.
Babylon, one of the most wicked kingdoms to dwell on the face of the earth. It’s rise to power was swift, and they were really the first major world power of the region. As Daniel showed Nebuchadnezzar, they were that head of God, first and most pure in their world dominance. This power-hungry nation seemed unstoppable, and toppled every nation they came against.
My children try to take justice into their own hands sometimes, and it turns into a huge mess! Their sense of justice is selfish, and so they usually follow human nature. Human nature says, you took my eye, I will take your life. You took my tooth, I will take your head off. This is one reason God enacted the law eye for eye, tooth for tooth, to temper the human nature for revenge.
My children’s nature to exact extreme punishments upon their siblings makes it very hard for me to discipline the one that offended them. When Nate hits Brooklyn for breaking one of his toys it limits my ability to discipline Brooklyn like I should, and forces me to deal with the even more heinous behavior of Nate who hit her.
“Ah, the good ole’ days!” We often glamorize the past, remembering the good and forgetting the bad. I have done this... remembering college and thinking of all the great things that happened and all the great memorize. At the same time, I forget about the lack of sleep, stress, and heartache that came during that time as well. In the thick of a time in life we feel the past was “better” sometimes.
Have you ever dealt with someone that was hardheaded? The type of person who just wouldn’t budge and inch even when they know they are wrong? Yeah, I can be that type of person sometimes… thick skulled and hard headed.
My senior year of Bible College at Heartland Baptist Bible College, one of the professors (whom I never had in class) wanted to talk to me. He had heard a rumor about somethings going on in the dorms (of which I was an RA), and was concerned that it might not be the best practices. In my great piety, I meet with him, and come to find out the issue was something I was responsible for. I defended my position, and at the time thought this guy was overreacting and stepping over his bounds.
You ever have something in life happen and think, “that’s not fair!” I get to hear this phrase a lot from my children, and it is funny hearing their sense of equity and fairness. Like many in the world today, they have quite a selfish view of “fair”. It really only is fair if it benefits them.
In society, a lot has been discussed here lately about equality. There are those who feel they are suffering inequality, and this unfairly disables them for life. Recently, people are taking to the street demanding justice, fairness, and equity. Just like my children, their view of equity and “fair” is very warped and self-focused.
Ecclesiastes talks about casting your bread upon the water, for thou shalt find if after many days. The idea being to give liberally to uncertain ground, because it may bring forth abundantly. Throughout my limited years gardening, I have found this to be true. Sometimes I think one piece of ground is going to yield a great crop, and it fizzles and doesn’t make at all. Other times I think a piece of ground is worthless, and it proves to be the richest producer that year.
Just for fun, I have been following the stock market through this volatile time. It amazes me how many stocks you think should do good, tank. Other times, stocks that appear to be failing, turn around, and prosper. Sometimes you just never know which will do well and which won’t.
After punishment comes restoration. I mentioned yesterday about having to give my precious daughter spankings. The blessing about discipline is it gives opportunity for correcting wrong, but also deepening our relationship. If done right, discipline should not drive a wedge, but act as a bonding agent that draws us together. I know it may sound strange, but some of the best talks with my children have come after correction and discipline. When their heart is made right and fellowship is mended.