Friday, March 23, 2007

How miraculous is the mercy of God!

I was recently studying in Romans 8 for a sermon and as I was doing so, I became overwhelmed at the truly miraculous nature of my salvation. A thought occured to me that it often seems that only those who have been saved from truly dire situations tend to remember just how much of a miracle God's intervention in their lives really was. The natural human tendancy is to think that the guy who was saved after a life of drunkeness, fornication, brawling, drug addiction, etc., is a much greater miracle than the guy who was raised in a great Christian home, was saved at 4 or 5 yearsof age, and has always "done the right thing". I suppose that this is because we tend to look at the salvation God grants us through a temporal lens. While we hear Paul's words in Romans 7 ("In me dwells no good thing"..."Oh wretched man that I am"), I'm not certain that we always understand them. Even though I may have been saved at a young age, I had still earned eternal punishment and damnation. The same eternal punishment and damnation that the drunk, brawling, drug-addicted, whoremonger has earned.

Don't get me wrong here....I listen to UNSHACKLED! rather frequently. One of my favorite websites has recently added a feature called "Stories of Life Change". I truly enjoy reading these accounts of the mercy and goodness of God. I always stand in awe of how these people were so hopeless, but then God intervened. But I ask the question, is their story any more awe-inspiring and miraculous than that of the 50 year old deacon in my church who was saved at age 4 and has never known what it's like to be running from God?

In Romans 8, we are confronted with a number of encouraging truths, but perhaps the most precious one is found beginning in verse 14:

"For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, "Abba! Father!" The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him."

It's an amazing, incomprehensible fact that the King of kings and Lord of lords; the Alpha and the Omega; the Creator and Sustainer of all; the Holy One; the Majestic One; the all-powerful, all-knowing, holy, righteous, merciful, Sovreign God of all would adopt us! This adoption is with full benefits into the forever family of God! I dare you to try to wrap your mind around that one!

As I think on these things I am flooded with emotions. I am so humbled that I am compelled to tearfully fall on my face in awe of the Almighty, yet I'm so evercome with joy that I want to spring to my feet, raise my arms in praise, and shout "Hallelujah to the Most High!"

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