I was driving to Sonic this morning and on the road beside our apartment you kind of have to risk your life when you pull out. The speed limit is 45, but that limit is fictional and if you go 45 you will most surely be "run over." So I pull out onto the road and get up to 50 mph and a truck that is going at least 75 passes me and these words came out of my mouth. "He had to be going at least 75 mph." I noticed his lack of regard for the speed limit by going way faster, but missed my 5 mph over the same limit. His sin of speeding was "much worse" than mine.....REALLY?
Sadly enough that is kind of how we look at sin isn't it? Their sin is much worse than mine.... And then we use that reasoning to stretch our limits as well. God's Word shows sin on a level playing field, or as the saying goes "The ground is level at the foot of the cross!" Jesus speaks to the sinful woman who washed his feet with her tears in this way in Luke 7:36 One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to have dinner with him, so Jesus went to his home and sat down to eat. 37 When a certain immoral woman from that city heard he was eating there, she brought a beautiful alabaster jar filled with expensive perfume.38 Then she knelt behind him at his feet, weeping. Her tears fell on his feet, and she wiped them off with her hair. Then she kept kissing his feet and putting perfume on them. Why would we look at other's sins and measure our life by them? It is a totally natural thing to do this because it allows us to use other sinners as our measuring stick and it keeps us from the reality of our sin. The woman in the above scripture realized who Jesus was and who she was and it humbled her and caused her to want to serve Him and honor Him. In the Scripture it records that she put perfume on his feet as well, in such a was as to honor Him. It was at this point that Jesus brought out the realization of how we look at our forgiveness on a personal level. No longer measuring ourselves with others, but letting Jesus be our measurement. Romans 3:23 says For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. It doesn't follow up on that by saying "Some sinned more than others.." It says ALL and it means ALL. Look at the story Jesus told Simon when He and the other Pharisees were wondering if Jesus knew she was a sinner. 39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know what kind of woman is touching him. She’s a sinner!”
40 Then Jesus answered his thoughts. “Simon,” he said to the Pharisee, “I have something to say to you.” “Go ahead, Teacher,” Simon replied. 41 Then Jesus told him this story: “A man loaned money to two people—500 pieces of silver to one and 50 pieces to the other. 42 But neither of them could repay him, so he kindly forgave them both, canceling their debts. Who do you suppose loved him more after that?” 43 Simon answered, “I suppose the one for whom he canceled the larger debt.”
Now the point of the story is seen in the following verses. “That’s right,” Jesus said. 44 Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Look at this woman kneeling here. When I entered your home, you didn’t offer me water to wash the dust from my feet, but she has washed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You didn’t greet me with a kiss, but from the time I first came in, she has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You neglected the courtesy of olive oil to anoint my head, but she has anointed my feet with rare perfume.
47 “I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” 48 Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 The men at the table said among themselves, “Who is this man, that he goes around forgiving sins?” 50 And Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
I guess the point of the blog today is "Do we truly thank Jesus as sinners forgiven or as those who feel privileged from our forgiveness?" If we truly realize the grace God gives us we will daily honor him by giving of ourselves in thankfulness to Him. This is not to be treated like some rule "Serve Jesus.That's the rule." It is just a natural thing prompted by the Holy Spirt in our life.....Serve Jesus.....Thank Jesus.....Live for Jesus......Learn from Jesus. The Bible calls it righteousness and it means that Jesus has made us "right' with God and the result is the abundant life and eternity in heaven. There should be some natural, personal Godliness that is seen from a life that realizes what we are saved from and what we are saved to. We are saved from eternity in hell and saved to eternal life in heaven, with the abundant life on earth as the "kicker." That should drive us to our knees as we kneel before the One who made it all happen on the cross. When we do that we will no longer worry about people going 25 mph over the limit when we are going 5 mph over the same limit. Five or twenty five....no difference. Both sinners when lining up before Jesus. Make Jesus your measuring stick and realize that His forgiveness is a precious thing for ALL who come to Him for it.
The Pilgrimage Continues.....