“What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew, or what value is there in circumcision? Much in every way! First of all, they have been entrusted with the very words of God. What if some did not have faith? Will their lack of faith nullify God’s faithfulness? Not at all! Let God be true, and every man a liar.” Romans 3:1-4a New International Version
How often have you found yourself puzzled by something written in the Bible? I’ve discovered that many people find themselves driven away from the Bible by verses that apparently contradict each other. I was brought up attending church, and most of my education was in parochial schools. Because of this foundation in biblical learning, I view scripture as the word of God. I also recognize that in the Bible there are parables, poems, stories, many ways of presenting God’s words! God inspired the writers in their time to present His word to the people in their time. And in all of this, over thousands of years, God speaks to us. This I find is a most profound revelation of His faithfulness!
Personally, if I discover something I’m not understanding, or it appears the Bible is contradicting itself, I know the issue is with me, not with what I’m reading. When that occurs I seek clarification through God, the Bible, the Holy Spirit, doing word studies, discussing the key issues with trusted Christ-centered friends, and in listening to God’s still small voice. His still small voice leads us into all truth. And as we all know, Jesus is Truth; He is the Truth we are all seeking. He is the only Truth that exists!
God created, the Word, the Bible, which I believe leads me in knowing God. It reveals an intimate relationship from the very first moment God created mankind. I think of the intimacy of that first breath blown gently into Adam’s and then Eve’s bodies, bringing to life the beginning of humanity, the beginning for each of us. There are days when I feel that intimacy flowing through every fibre of my being. There are also those days when all I feel is fractious, discontented, questioning every arena of my life! It is when those days hit me the hardest I find God is closest! It is often after the fact that I realize He was always with me and within me!
Paul wants those in Rome, and by default those of us in this 21st Century to know this: God is always faithful! Always, not sometimes, not occasionally, not only when I am good, not only when my faith is strong, not only when I am following all the rules! God is always faithful because He is God. He loves us; He created for us the way of escaping the consequences of sin. The escape clause is better known as the Gospel of Jesus Christ! It’s the gospel that was already established; its foundation is inherent in the building of this world God created for us! It is also our foundation in grace, it anchors us into the love that is ours through Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.
We get ourselves so wound up, tangled in a trap, when we worry about not measuring up! The truth is we will never measure up, mostly because we keep trying to be what we cannot be. We can never be perfect in and of ourselves. I believe Adam and Eve were created perfect, however working to be perfect was never the task God gave them– not ever– not even after the pair left the garden!
Somewhere along the way the enemy threw us a sucker ball, getting us all focused on what we did, on what others did, on what wasn’t being done, and we lost the plot of the story! The task God gave Adam and Eve was to be fruitful and multiply. He gave them charge over the garden, they were the leadership for this newly created world. God gave them the responsibility of caring for this world, teaching all of their children the reality of God, the One who created them.
We still have the same responsibility today as did Adam and Eve. Only it is more desperately needed now than ever! God’s reputation is under attack like never before! I can say this because He is being slandered by the very ones who claim to represent Him. More and more are turning their backs on the Bible, seeking to find God everywhere except where He reveals Himself! We have this incredible promise given to us by our Creator. No matter how faithless we may be or become He remains faithful for always and forever.
I am longing for the day when I will no longer question God’s love or motives! I don’t so much question Him now, it’s more that I get worried about stuff. I can’t even name what it is that throws me off kilter, it’s just stuff! And isn’t that the way it always is? The stuff is what gets in the way! Paul writes to the Romans what matters for us is the faithfulness of God. As Paul points out, this is truth since God does not lie! Our lives are full of sneak attacks incited by the enemy who seeks to mess us up with stuff! If the enemy is able to distract us from God’s truth concerning His passion and intimacy in us, for us, and through us we become vulnerable to the enemy’s lies about God!
We Christians have been given so many gifts for moving through life, even as it is found on this planet in rebellion. The greatest of which is God involved in our lives on every level. There is nothing too small for God to be interested in, because everything that makes a difference in our life affects His heart. Our only safe haven from the enemy of this world is in Jesus. When we are in Him we have life as it was meant to be. If we will believe what God tells us, what Jesus tells us, what the Holy Spirit brings into our lives, the stuff will become less and less an issue!
It always comes back to grace, the grace God enfolds around us. God remaining faithful is inherent in grace, and who wants to do life of any kind without God’s grace? I am so thankful that my relationship with God doesn’t rely on my faithfulness, but is covered by God’s faithfulness, grace, love, and mercy. So for my part, with the help of the Holy Spirit I will remain in the Process of Grace.
“Let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our guilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.” Hebrews 10:22-23 New Living Translation
[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]