The evening sunlight Shines through the crabapple branches, Dispersing a crown of light Upon my glorious backyard world.
Gold finches, Nuthatches,Chickadees, Downey Woodpeckers, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, Cardinals, Bluejays, Sparrows, and more . . .
Cry out to their Maker in song, Melding their melodies With the soft strength of the setting sun.
I know He is pleased. His pleasure has become mine As I sit and soak in The glory He has procured . . .
Delight is a gift Poured from His lap, The overflow of His grace Upon those He loves.
Protected, preserved; Safe within His plan.
King Jesus rules. His crown shines on. All is at rest!
Romans 8:22-28 “For we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now. Not only so, but ourselves also, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for adoption, the redemption of our body. For we were saved in hope, but hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for that which he sees? But if we hope for that which we don’t see, we wait for it with patience. In the same way, the Spirit also helps our weaknesses, for we don’t know how to pray as we ought. But the Spirit himself makes intercession for us with groanings which can’t be uttered. He who searches the hearts knows what is on the Spirit’s mind, because he makes intercession for the saints according to God. We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have ordained;what is man, that you think of him? What is the son of man, that you care for him? Psalms 8:3-4
In the above photograph provided by NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft in 2013, we see Saturn in the foreground and way, way behind it we see a blue speck highlighted by an arrow, otherwise we would miss it. I’m sure you may have guessed by now; that this little blue dust mote is the planet Earth. It is you and me. It is our home. Think of the billions of people that are alive right now, upon that little blue dot. Think of the endless magnificence of the universe, with billions of galaxies containing billions of stars.
And . . . There we are . . . lost in insignificance.
But . . . Not to the heart of God.
No, we are not lost to Him. It is His way. What is exalted will be brought low. What is humbled will be exalted. What mankind sees as incredible is nothing in God’s sight. What mankind sees as worthless is invaluable to God.
You are invaluable to God.
He would trade all the stars in the firmament of the heavens for you. Indeed, He would trade His very self for you. For your freedom. For your liberty from the slavery of sin and your deliverance from the grave.
In truth, God has done just that, sending His only begotten Son as a ransom for you and for me. Men worship many things and they give their souls away for what will, one day, be lost. But, God, not wanting us to be lost in the insignificance of these ‘things’ has offered us Life!
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:1-5
“So he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. For it is indeed fitting for us to have such a high priest: holy, innocent, undefiled, separate from sinners, and exalted above the heavens.” Hebrews 7:25,26
Perfect holiness, unapproachable Majesty. This is the Holy One of Heaven. Throughout history, men have cowered before the thrones of earthly kings. Being called before an absolute ruler was not usually a good thing. The commoner’s life was held at the whim of one man, seated on a throne of consolidated power. And, as history teaches us, few of these rulers were of noble character. Being brought before such a man was terrifying, considering the power he had over the lives of his subjects. So, men would quite naturally give the king their utmost respect.
In considering this, think of what it will be like to stand before the throne of the Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, the one called ‘The King of kings and the Lord of lords’. Think of what it will be like for the person who has shaken his fist in defiance at God and has despised everything that the Holy One considers true and beautiful. That moment before that Throne will be a moment of abject terror such as one has never experienced before, when the realization dawns upon that person that they have spent their life, (given to them by God), defying Him.
But, the Word of God tells us that: “God is Love.” (1 John 4:8). The Lord, who is unapproachably holy, the One who is completely undefiled by sin, has made a way for you and me to approach Him. Indeed He has made a way for us to dwell with Him; even, amazingly, to be His children!
It is because He is Love that He has done this thing. His glory is absolute just as His love is absolute. In fact, His glory is His perfect love.
This is where intercession comes in. To intercede. This is the definition: “To plead on another’s behalf; To act as a mediator in a dispute; To intervene between two parties with a view to reconciling the differences.”
Allow me to simplify and expand the definition from God’s viewpoint. It means to stand in the gap and take the punishment that was meant for someone else; it means to take their place and allow the wrath against sin that was meant for the other person to be poured out on another in order to satisfy a Holy God.
This is the other, Son of God. This is Jesus. This is what He freely chose to do out of His love for you and for me. God’s perfect righteousness must be satisfied. Rather than satisfy it by judging, condemning and punishing us, He chose to place all of these things upon His Son Jesus. The Word of God says that: “He became sin who knew no sin, that, we might become the righteousness of God in Him!” (2 Corinthians 5:21) This means simply, that Jesus took the guilt, shame and punishment for our sin upon Himself, that all who believe in Him may not perish but have everlasting life! It is only by faith that we can receive this gift. Even our faith is a gift of God. All we have to do is ask!
And, please, always remember . . . He ever lives to make intercession for us! That means today, at this very moment, if you have fallen into sin, Jesus is standing in the gap for you, showing His Heavenly Father that the price has been paid; that you are His purchased posession; that He will complete what He has begun in your life!
“This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance: ‘Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners’ – and I am the worst of them all!” Paul the Apostle (1 Timothy 1:15)
If you think you’ve gone too far, that the evil you have done puts you beyond hope, I am here to tell you that you are wrong. If you know someone that thinks this about themselves, or, maybe you have thought that about them, then you need to repent of those thoughts and go to them and share the Good News: That they are not beyond hope, That God truly loves them, that he has made a way for them to be redeemed, to be changed, to be delivered from sin and shame and guilt . . .
I want to point out something: Paul used the present tense. He said, “I am the chief of sinners”, not “I was”. Until we can say this, along with Paul about ourselves, without any doubt as to its truth, we can never be a truly convincing witness of the love of Jesus Christ. Why? Because we will still be talking to others from a place of superiority.
But, once you really catch on to the fact that YOU are the worst sinner of all, then, when you share the incredibly wonderful news of God’s love and forgiveness to another broken person, your word will have power: power to bring salvation! Until that happens, you will only come across as a self-righteous, religious prig. Virtually no one will listen to you.
I want you to remember something; King David, the man who wrote the majority of the Psalms, The man whom God said was ‘a man after His own heart’, this very man, was an adulterer and a murderer!
Never forget that no one is beyond the love and forgiveness of God.
If you have been told that by a religious person, that it is hopeless for a person such as you, then you have been told a lie and God will hold them to account for that.
I hope I have made it clear to you, I who am the worst of sinners, that if God can rescue me and save me from my sin, then he can save you!
His Wonderful Grace, Ron
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” John 3:16,17