July 30, 2019

What I read today;

1 Corinthians 14; Mark 2; Isaiah 30; Job 30; Judges 6; Genesis 30

On March 17, 2005, a group of baseball players sat in a hearing room in Washington DC to discuss the problem of steroid use in Major League Baseball.  Among them was Texas Rangers First Baseman Rafael Palmeiro.  Palmeiro had become an authentic Hall of Famer in his career.  He would end his career with 500 home runs and 3000 hits.  Those statistics alone should have guaranteed his place in Cooperstown.  Palmeiro sat in the hearing room, wagging his finger at Congress, stating vehemently that he had never done Steroids.  Unfortunately, on August 1st, only a few short months later, Palmeiro was suspended for failing a steroid test.  He played for a short time after this. Unfortunately, his career was effectively over at this point. Any chance of him being enshrined as one of the greatest players that ever lived was now over.

The Pharisee in Mark 2 verse 15-17 is also wagging his finger.  He’s pointing out the sin of a woman who is coming to Jesus for forgiveness.  She already knows that she has failed. The woman understands precisely who Jesus is and what he can do for her.  The Pharisee is living with a misguided idea that he is free from sin.  He believes that because he’s outwardly appearing to meet God’s requirements in the law that he now has the right to sit in judgment of others.  But Jesus sees right through him.

Each one of us needs to understand that without Jesus, we are unable to have a relationship with God.  We can’t do it.  Our sin keeps us out of the presence of God.  Jesus provides us entry.  But too often Christians, are too busy pointing out the failures of others to recognize that we also have sin in our lives.  We can hide it, deny it, and try to justify it, but Sin is there stuck in the back of our closets.  We begin to believe that it’s our own righteousness that gets us into heaven, not Jesus saving work on the cross.  That’s when trouble arises.

When we stand before God, and he asks why we should get into heaven, the only acceptable answer is, because Jesus saved me.  Any other response will leave us standing there looking as foolish as Rafael Palmeiro did in 2005.

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