Tuesday, July 2, 2013

According to His Mercy

"So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous." Romans 6:18-19

Kari Beougher
My Dad is a pastor and professor and loves to use stories about his children as illustrations. Unfortunately, over the years I have frequently been used as his illustration for sin. When I was 15 months old, I was playing outside and walking toward the road. Concerned, my parents said, "Kari Michelle, don't you dare put one foot in that street." So I walked over to the road, bent down and put my two hands in the street. Though I obviously don't remember this, I have heard the story enough times to feel as though I do. My Dad's point is that they did not have to teach me how to sin or choose disobedience. Integral to our human nature is the propensity toward sin and the inability to choose righteousness. Left to ourselves, we are absolutely unable to live in a way that is pleasing to God.

The good news of the Gospel is "although you were formerly ALIENATED and HOSTILE in mind, ENGAGED in EVIL deeds, yet He has now RECONCILED you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him HOLY and BLAMELESS and BEYOND REPROACH- if indeed you CONTINUE in the faith firmly ESTABLISHED and STEADFAST, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel..." (Colossians 1:21-23).

While we were still ENGAGED in evil deeds, God sent His Son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for our sins and thus reconcile us to God. Now, we who were formerly unable to choose obedience are made righteous through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Titus 3:5 says, "He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but ACCORDING TO HIS MERCY."

Today, may we thank God for His incredible mercy and grace toward us. May we continue in our faith, not shifting from the hope of the Gospel.