Category Archives: Freedom

The Compromisers

 

Grace 101

Have you ever noticed how everyone jumps on a popular topic or style?  Today’s marketers are hardly original.  They wait until something begins to gain attention and then grab it to use to sell their product.  Once people realized that carnival hawkers actually sold product through their abrasive and loud approach, our televisions and radios were bombarded with obnoxious advertisements telling us what we need and the number to call to get it.  Today every business has to have a website just because every other business has one.  By far the majority have yet to find ways to make money from their sites.  We are so used to riding on the bandwagons that come our way that we don’t think twice about the value of doing so.

Sadly, the church does the same thing.  Once contemporary music became identified as progressive, almost every church moved to do it, most of them poorly.  For over 35 years I have watched so many fads come through the church.  Some are good and last; others were not so good.

Now the message of grace is exploding among the people of God.  People are beginning to understand that rules and standards are not the real gospel.  They are finding freedom and peace in their Christian lives.  New books are being written, ministries are rising up, and a new vocabulary is coming into the churches.

So it should not surprise us to hear pastors and teachers proclaiming grace and freedom from the law from the pulpit.  No one wants to be left out of the excitement.  But not all understand or accept the message.  Some want to use it to keep their people in their church.  Others want to use it to build their church.  And most want to use it as evidence that they are not “stuck in the law.”  After all, who would want to be considered legalistic?

And from those pulpits comes a compromised message.  “Yes, we believe in grace, but . . . .”  The message of law has not gone away, it has just been redecorated by the words of grace.  “Jesus loves you and you should work to deserve His love.”  “Jesus has done it all for you and now He expects you to do this and that.”  The people hear the words of grace and are happy to believe that their pastor is teaching truth, but it is truth mixed with lies.  They come away from a Sunday morning confused and burdened.  This grace message didn’t lighten their load.  They found no real peace or victory.  It was just words that sounded right.

Listen: the words of grace are not the message of grace.  The message of grace lifts your heart and sets you free.  You walk away knowing that you are loved and accepted, in spite of your struggles and weaknesses.  The message of grace is the message of Jesus and the love of God.

It can never be Jesus plus.  It is Jesus alone.  When you hear, “Grace is nice, but law is important,” run.  That is not the message of grace.  That is the message of the compromiser.  That is the message of the Pharisee.

Paul encountered these people and had strong words for them.  They said, “Yes, Jesus is Lord, but you also have to be circumcised and stay away from certain foods and keep certain rituals if you want to be right with God.”  They led people away from Christ and back into bondage.

When you hear that there is some division of spirituality between those who are saved and those who are “really saved,” you know that a standard other than the love of God in Jesus is being applied.  When you hear that you are saved by grace but have to maintain your salvation by works, the message of grace has been compromised.

I understand that a preacher can only teach what he has learned, but a compromised message is dangerous for the people.  It is just the old message of law and performance in the new language of grace, a predator that steals the joy away from those who need the true love of God.

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Filed under Freedom, Grace 101, Grace definition, Legalism

Error in the Name of Grace

 

Grace 101

Because the church system neglected or forgot the message of grace and the sufficiency of Christ, those who teach grace are often thought to be bringing a new gospel.  The message meets a certain amount of opposition simply because the people haven’t heard it before.  But, for the same reason, it attracts predators who want to use the freshness and excitement that comes with it.

Jesus used the birds to illustrate this opportunism.  The birds swoop to the new seed and snatch it away from its intended purpose before it has a chance to take root.  They come to feed, to use the seed for themselves, with no regard for the needs of the gardener.

Often, when the grace message is proclaimed, there are those who welcome it with open arms because they see ways to use it for their own agenda.  In the last post I wrote about the anti-law people who see in the message of grace support for their desire to serve certain passions of their flesh.  Today I want to focus on those who use this message to promote their unorthodox teachings.

The grace message teaches that God takes the initiative and does the work of salvation.  This has been used by some in recent days to support their ideas of universal salvation.  They say that, since we can do nothing toward our salvation, then God has done the work for all people in Jesus.  All are saved; all are forgiven; all are reconciled to God, they say, because that was what Jesus did on the cross for all people.  They do not believe that any personal reception or expression of faith can be necessary because Jesus died for all.  They believe hell was an invention of those who wanted to keep people in line under the law.

The error of this is obvious for many people, but the argument is now couched in the language of grace.  Since God loves all people and the sacrifice of Jesus is sufficient for any and all, then salvation has been given as a gift to all, whether they know it or accept it or not, they say.  Many of these people held this view before they learned of the grace message, but now they have changed their vocabulary.

Another very current area in which we find the grace message used is in the advocacy of certain movements which have been challenged by the church.  Homosexual marriage, for example, is said to be acceptable because “we are not under law but under grace.”  Drug use, pornography, and other practices deemed immoral by conservative churches are to be accepted because to reject them would be to operate under law.  Believers find this very confusing and some reject the grace message because it is misused.

We must understand that this is to be expected.  The definition of grace is a Person, not a code or a list.  We do not have standards to which we must measure.  We don’t have a law at all except to love one another and God above all.  We cannot point to commandments that must be obeyed in order for us to experience grace.  Frankly, the door that was opened to allow us into Christ without requiring a change of behavior is the same door that is used to suggest that such behavior is now acceptable.

But accepting a person is different from accepting that person’s behavior.  And living under grace is not the same as license to do whatever we wish in the flesh.  Nor does the truth of the sufficiency of Christ negate the personal responsibility of each individual to accept what Jesus has done.

Just because the truth is misused does not make it less true.

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Anti-Law

Grace 101

Over the past several Grace 101 posts I have focused on the parable of the sower from Matthew 13 to give us a structure for looking at enemies of grace.  I started with the trampled or trodden path, the hard ground that would not let the seed take root.  But other enemies take advantage of the hard ground to pick off the seed as it lies on top.  Jesus calls them the “birds of the air.”

The birds of the air are opportunists.  They watch for something to happen and then try to take advantage of it.  If you drop your french fries out of your car window in the parking lot, it won’t be long before the gulls or crows are there to eat them.  I once saw eight bald eagles eating the carcass of a dead deer alongside the road.  So, if the seed of the gospel of grace is scattered among the people, the birds will be there to pick it up.

One of those birds is what I will call the “anti-law crowd.”  You know these folks.  Since they are under grace, they say, anything goes.  I won’t go into details on their behavior, but their attitude is usually flippant, rebellious, and self-serving.  They excuse any behavior they choose by arguing that there is no more law over them.

The message of grace has always attracted the anti-law crowd.  Paul talked about them in Romans 6.  They push the limits of acceptance, even among unbelievers.  We are not supposed to scold them or criticize their choices, no matter how hurtful or foolish.  Why?  Because they are “under grace.”

And when the legalists criticize the message of grace, guess who they point at to make their case?  Of course, the anti-law crowd.  When grace is confused with “license to sin,” someone will point to a person who has little understanding of grace but wants to have the freedom to exhibit behavior God warns against.  We are called “antinomian,” anti-law, because we teach grace—even though we don’t do the things they do.

Now, I understand where the opening is for this error and I would never want to close that door.  The law no longer condemns us for our behavior.  Grace has freed us from that measurement system.  Those who belong to Christ and commit sinful behavior still belong to Christ.  That’s because He is the only measure of our acceptance to God.  We couldn’t change that if we wanted to.

But listen: no one is more free to sin under grace than he was under law.  I chuckle when I hear someone say that people sin more under grace.  I have lived under law and I have known very many people who live under law.  Sin is still very active under law.  It may be more hidden, less admitted, but it is certainly still there.  In fact, I could make a strong argument that the only real way to overcome sin is to live under grace.  Paul suggests that law only shines a light on sin, never stops it.

There is one important difference.  Under the law, sin is seen as evidence that the person needs a Savior.  Under grace, sin is evidence that the flesh is leading.  Making a Christian feel that he or she is under the law can only result in a life without assurance and more sin.  Allowing a Christian to understand grace is the beginning of life in the Spirit, rather than the flesh.  We are free under grace.

So what do we do about those who flaunt their behavior and excuse it by saying that they are under grace, when they are really just happy to be out from under the constrictions of the law?  Probably nothing.  We can warn them that sin still has consequences, I suppose.  We can explain that they do not represent our thinking when others point them out.  But it is hard to keep the birds away.

The anti-law crowd does not invalidate the message of grace.  They are simply confused and they confuse others.

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Filed under Freedom, Grace 101, Grace definition, Legalism

Freedom

Grace 101

 

“It was for freedom that Christ has set us free.”  Galatians 5:1 NASB

This is the time of year our nation celebrates freedom.  It’s a big word and we use it to mean different things.  Chances are that it means something different to a fourteen year-old than it does to her parents.  It means something different to an employee than to an employer.  It may even mean something different in one country than in another.  But what does it mean in the context of grace?

Freedom is a hinge concept.  Legalists will tell us that freedom is far less than we think.  Liberals will tell us that it is far more than we think.  Grace people often get into trouble when we try to explain what it means.  Some have said that it means we are free to do whatever we want.  Others say that we are free to do what is right.  All of this is confusing and misses the point.

Freedom in Christ means deliverance from bondage.  We were slaves of sin, under condemnation and shame, bound to evil in our hearts.  We belonged to evil.  It was our master and the realm in which we lived.  When Jesus came to us, He reached into that evil and pulled us out.  He paid the price, did the work, lived the life, that was needed—and He set us free.

Sin owned us, but Jesus set us free from sin.  The law held us in condemnation, but Jesus set us free from the law.  Failure defined us, but Jesus delivered us from our failure.  This is what our freedom is about.

You see, you and I could always do what we wanted.  Nothing stopped us from sinning.  When we wanted to disobey our Lord, we found ways.  We have always lived in that “freedom.”  So when someone says, “Well, you aren’t just free to do whatever you want!”  You answer, “I always have been free to do what I want and so have you.”  The point is not that we can do things now that we couldn’t do before.  The point is that we are no longer slaves to sin and citizens of evil.

The moment you received salvation in Jesus, that moment you were set free from evil and all the strings it had attached to your life.  In that amazing gift box, Jesus has given you freedom.  You are no longer under condemnation, no longer in shame, no longer bound to sin.  You are free to make changes in your life and He will guide you and enable you.  You are free to live without fear of rejection, secure in His love.  You are free to love others without expectation.

The ways of the world, the flesh, and the devil are no longer your ways by definition.  You are free.  You are free from your past, from the ways and habits of your family, and from the judgments of others.  You are free from the old life, the old you.

And your freedom in Jesus is not just defined by what you are free from, but also by what you are free to.  You are free to experience joy and creativity and rest.  You are free to feel free.

Fireworks and parties and games and laughter are every bit as appropriate for the believer on any day as they are for our nation on the fourth of July.  We have been set free by the Lord who loves us.  That’s something to celebrate!

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Salvation

 

Grace 101

Almost the first thing anyone knows about as a gift from Jesus and through Jesus is salvation.  In fact, many of those who refuse to look deeper into the package still accept and appreciate the fact of salvation.  The gospel message is about salvation and the message of the church is about salvation.  Even those who think you have to earn Heaven by good works talk about salvation. 

The one thing most church people know about grace is that it is for saving us.  We are, they know, saved by grace.  They might even add that we are not saved by works, but so many don’t seem to believe that with their hearts.  If they don’t strive to obtain salvation, they strive either to maintain it or to deserve it.  After salvation, much of the church forgets about grace.

Salvation, at least, is a clear work of grace.  But does anyone know what we are saved from?  Most people would simply say that we are saved from hell, I suppose.  Children often say that we are saved from our sins.  Some people think we are saved from the evil one.  There is a sense in which each of these is true.

It seems to me that the important thing is not what we were saved from, but what we were saved out of.  We were stuck in a realm of darkness and evil, a river that flowed too strongly for us to escape.  We could not overcome the current of that great river as it bore us ever closer to hell.  There was no way for us to save ourselves.  Nor could anyone in the river with us save us.  They were as stuck as we were.

So we needed a Savior.  Someone from the outside.  Someone not in the river, not in the realm of darkness and evil.  Jesus came from God.  He was God Himself in human flesh, and He came to save us.  In a sense, He waded into the river, unaffected by the current, and brought us out. 

Now that’s important.  It isn’t just that we were saved from a negative final destination, although we were.  It isn’t just that we were saved from the things our sins deserved, although we were.  No, we were saved out of all of it.  That realm of darkness and evil is in our past, but no longer in our present.  That world is no longer our home and we are no longer bound to its influences.  Sin no longer has dominion over us (Rom 6:14), and we no longer must do what it suggests.   Since the law was given into the realm of darkness and sin, judging it and moving people to cry out for salvation, we can no longer be under law.  There’s so much more. 

I also believe it is just as important to proclaim what we have been saved into, as what we have been saved out of.  We have been saved into Christ, brought into relationship with Him.  We were not simply rescued from darkness and left on our own.  We were brought into the light.  Sin is no longer our master, but Christ, the righteous One who loves us, is our Master.  And we are no longer under law, but we are under grace.

This is, of course, a simple presentation of the idea of salvation.  The point is that salvation was a gift.  We did nothing to earn it, nor could we have done anything to earn it.  God, in His love, offered it to us and we received it.  It was in the gift.

I know that some people use salvation to denote everything we received in Christ.  That’s fine, but I think it lessens the wonder and joy to focus on only one aspect of the gift.  So we are going to look deeper into the package.

Get ready.  There’s a lot more in the box than salvation!

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When Receiving Doesn’t Make Sense

Grace 101

 

Is receiving enough for you?  Do you feel you should do more to be “really” saved?  Do you feel like just receiving is being too passive?  Do you struggle with letting God give what you need when there are so many commands for right living in Scripture?  Does it make more sense that we should be working hard to keep favor with God?

There are often reasons people feel this way.  Let’s look at a few:

  1.  You feel guilty for your past.  It is one thing to hear that you are forgiven and quite another to feel forgiven.  But there is no truth contrary to God’s truth.  Whether you feel like it or not, all your sins have been forgiven in Christ.  You did nothing to earn or deserve that forgiveness.  It was a gift of His love.  That’s the truth and you can go through life denying it and missing the peace or you can accept it and be grateful. 
  2. You feel guilty for your present.  Your life doesn’t measure up to the standards you have learned.  You should be able to stop doing some of the things you do.  You feel that you don’t deserve to be saved.  Well, let’s establish right from the beginning that you didn’t deserve to be saved and you don’t deserve to stay saved.  But it wasn’t about your behavior then and it isn’t now.  There are certainly dangers in sinful behavior, but losing your salvation is not one of them.  Let the Lord lead you to right living, but trust in His love.
  3. You are getting bad teaching.  Many churches and preachers know nothing except the law and performance spirituality.  Sunday after Sunday they call Christians to repentance and salvation.  They take the gospel of works to people who are already saved.  Make a distinction in your mind between the message to the lost and the message to the saved so that you can discern which you are hearing.  If you are constantly hearing the message to the lost in the context of the saved, you may want to find another church.
  4. The evil one is whispering his lies.  You may not be able to do much about his whispers, but you can learn to ignore them.  They are lies, after all.  You don’t even have to argue with him.  Just tell yourself the truth.  If the evil one whispers that your secret might not be forgiven, just tell yourself that God knows all the hidden things and has forgiven all your sins.  The love of God is our strong weapon against the lies.  If the lies of the evil one consistently draw you to the truth of God’s love, the evil one loses.

These are just a few reasons that come to mind when I ask why some people would have trouble receiving God’s grace.  Jesus said that the truth will set us free—free to receive the wonderful grace of God’s love!

What are your thoughts?

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Who is under grace?

Grace 101

Yesterday I wrote about the prodigal son and his older brother.  In the process, something interesting came up.  The older brother, I suggested, represented the Christian legalist.  The younger brother represented the believer who uses his newfound freedom to cultivate sin and rebellion.  I said that neither was under grace.

Now, of course, technically that statement was wrong.  Neither of them lived under grace, at least in the sense of enjoying the benefits of grace.  Both still appeared to be in bondage, one to the law and the other to his passions.  They didn’t know life under grace.

But all believers are under grace.  The fact of your position in Christ decides whether you are under law or under grace.  The unbeliever, still in his sins and on his way to hell, is under law.  Law brings conviction and moves the unbeliever’s heart to cry out for mercy to the Lord of love.  But those who have come to Jesus are under grace—whether they know it or not.

The profligate (isn’t that a great word?) wasted far more than his money.  He wasted his father’s love.  He wasted his freedom.  He wasted his joy.  He wasted the grace given to him.

So did the legalist.  He wasted the abundance that was his.  He also wasted his father’s love and the freedom he had.  He allowed his joy to turn to resentment and anger.  He also wasted the grace given to him.

The difference between these brothers is still active among believers today.  The legalists look at the prodigals and speak against their freedom.  The prodigals look at the legalists and speak against their bondage.  But both ignore their Father!

The truth is that anyone who is in Christ is under grace.  That includes both the legalist and the prodigal.  And—get this—God loves them both enough to stand ready to welcome them into joy whenever they are ready to look to Him again.

The legalist might try to keep himself under law, perhaps because he is afraid or has trouble accepting the love the Father gives, but he is not actually under law.  He is, because of Jesus, under grace.   And he simply needs to understand that the self-imposed rules and standards add nothing to the work Jesus has done for him.

And the prodigals do nothing to change the truth of grace by their behavior.  They are still loved and forgiven and accepted.  Their behavior may hurt them and others, but it does not discredit the love of the Father.   They need to understand that the freedom of grace is not freedom for sin, but freedom from sin.

The legalist might think that sin will separate him from his Lord, but he is wrong.  The prodigal might think that there is no consequence to sin, but he is wrong.  And both miss the point of grace.

Grace is a simple and regular walk with the Lord of love.  No worrys.  Rest and fulfillment and joy.  We rest because the work is done.  We are fulfilled because our Lord moves us to participate in His work without fear of failure or anxiety over results.  We live in joy because we are with the One who loves us, never to be parted from Him.

The Father’s love is the source of all grace.  When our eyes are on Him, everything else is good.

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Tax Day

 

I was born a citizen of the United States.  My parents and grand-parents and back several generations were also citizens.  Yet, if I want to stay out of jail, I had better get my taxes sent in.  Sometimes it feels like I have to pay to live here, even though this is my home.

Now, I understand the argument in favor of taxes.  There are services I expect to receive and those services cost money.  The taxes I pay, all political griping to the contrary, are simply participatory.  Because I participate in the benefits, I participate in the cost.  The idea seems reasonable.  Of course, if everyone were free to contribute whatever they wanted, the government wouldn’t have enough to cover the costs of the programs we expect.  So taxes are basically forced financial participation.

It is interesting that people who are so willing to accept citizenship in Heaven as a free gift are also willing to accept participatory costs in maintaining that citizenship.  In other words, you have to do a certain amount of good works and stay away from a certain amount of bad things if you really want to stay in the system.   Some say you can actually lose your citizenship in the Kingdom of Christ if you don’t do what you are supposed to do.  Others won’t go that far, but infer that there will be some kind of punishment if you don’t participate in the work of the Kingdom.

So, how do you like paying taxes?  Most of us do so a little grudgingly.  In fact, taxes are nerve-racking, intrusive, demanding, and costly.  A lot like religion.  It has certainly been my observation that few “religious” people are happy.  They are so bound up in trying to meet the requirements that they feel burdened and discouraged.   They reach the end of their lives hoping they have done enough, much like we hope things are right when we mail our tax forms.

I know that the Bible speaks of citizenship in Heaven and life in the Kingdom of God.  But there is another metaphor that is actually more important and helpful.  We are part of a family!

I don’t pay taxes to be in my family.  My family exists because of blood and love.  We need each other.  We participate for the good of the family.  If someone in the family doesn’t participate, we care and try to encourage, but the rest of us go on and keep the door open.  A brother or sister doesn’t stop being a brother or sister.

We are taught to call God our Father.  Jesus is our brother.  We are brothers and sisters in Him.  His life is our life.  We share with each other and love each other because we are family.  Sometimes we fuss at each other, but we are still family.

And no taxes/good works are necessary in order for us to remain part of the family.  We don’t have dues or membership fees or “godly expectations.”  We have each other in Jesus.

On Tax Day I give thanks that my part in Christ has been secured forever by His work and His payment!

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No Options

Grace 101

According to Baskin-Robbins’ website, the company has created over 1000 flavors of ice cream.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with the company, it generally features 31 flavors at a time.  People, especially children, are intrigued by the variety and sometimes stymied.  They just can’t seem to choose.  They walk back and forth looking, reading the descriptions, thinking about what they might like, and then someone with them or behind them says, “Just choose already!”  That might explain the fact that the most popular flavor sold by Baskin-Robbins is (drumroll please) . . . vanilla.  That’s right!

Sometimes in our country and our culture, we simply have too many options.  We move more slowly because we have so much to decide and much of the “decision-making power” of our lives is spent choosing between options that really are not that much different.  An argument could be made that our affluence actually hinders our progress at a certain point.

But what if you didn’t have any options?  In many countries around the world, no one asks what will be for supper.  They are simply grateful to have rice or bread or potatoes again.  No one wonders what to wear because they only have one set of clothes.  The lack of options almost defines poverty in the minds and hearts of Americans.

Adam and Eve found themselves without options in dealing with the most important part of their lives.  How were they to restore a relationship with God?  How could they find their way back to Paradise?  There was no option.  They were stuck where they were, in the life they had chosen.  The way back was closed.  They were not only spiritually poor, they were spiritually hopeless.

Of course they had other problems also.  Creation itself had changed.  The communion they had with God allowed them to walk among the creatures of the world in peace and harmony.  Nature was tied to humanity, made for humanity, and it fell with humanity.  The ground no longer brought forth crops joyfully.  The animals no longer enjoyed fellowship with humans.  Now there would be work and fighting and death.  And pain.  There would be pain.

But there were no options.  Adam and Eve and their children had nowhere else to go.  Eventually, they turned their backs on Eden and began a new life.

Truly, when people seem to have no options, they become very creative.  In years past I remember many meals of macaroni and cheese from the box.  The box was enough to feed the two of us and cost only 15 cents.  When it got monotonous, we chopped up wieners to add to it or, if we had a little, some sliced ham (my wife drew the line at Spam, but I liked it).  God made us amazingly creative.  We will pretend to have options, even if it appears we have none.

And two paths began to develop.  Now that the hearts of God and man were separate, their ideas of how to handle this new life became very different.  God’s path and man’s path.  After the Fall and before the Cross.

 

Grace 101 is a simple attempt to explain what has happened to us and what God has done for us.  So much of what we have learned has been confused by sectarian doctrines and theological jargon.  It is sometimes difficult to see the message the Lord wants us to understand as we read the Bible or worship together.  The series of posts will be found in the category called Grace 101 and begins here.  Enjoy!

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Free Will is not Free Ability


Grace 101

The other day I mentioned the Calvinist vs Arminian debate.  If there is any way to kill a blog like this, getting into that discussion would be it.  No, I am not going there.  I just want to clear up something that puzzles many people.  Yes, I have my perspective on the theological issues, but I am not planning to write about that.

When Adam and Eve sinned, it was a one way deal.  They could choose to sin, but they couldn’t come back.  Why?  Because they died!  That’s what God told them would happen.  If they ate of the fruit, in that very day, they would die.  And they did die.  Because they were dead, there was no way for them to return to the life God wanted for them.

This really isn’t hard for us to understand.  If you have ever stood on the edge of a cliff, you should understand this.  You have the freedom to throw  yourself off the cliff.  But once you do, you don’t have the freedom to fly back up to where you were standing.  That opportunity is gone once you “die” to the security of the cliff.  When you take that forbidden step and submit your life to gravity, you have to suffer the consequences.

Now, let’s push that illustration a little further.  Suppose, on the long way down, you change your mind.  Are you free to do that?  Of course!  You can change your mind.  You just can’t do anything about your circumstances.  You still have free will.  But you no longer have free ability.

In the “Fall” (pun more than intended) Adam and Eve chose to step into sin, but they had no ability to step out of sin.  No matter how much they regretted their choice and wanted to get back to the Garden, the Scripture says that the way was closed.  The choice was made.

Notice that God set up a system of sacrifice even then.  He told them that the life and blood of another would cover their sins.  He still loved them, but there was a distance between them and Him.  Somehow, and it is a mystery, that blood covered their sins and allowed them into the presence of God.  But not back to the Garden.  He would speak with them and care for them, but it would not be the same.  No matter how well they obeyed from that point on, it would never restore what they had lost.

And when the Law was given, with all its rituals and rules, it was not given to restore the people and give them life.  It was to cover their sins and point them to another day, when their sins would be gone forever.

So those who are lost in sin can still desire communion with God.  They can feel a sense of what has been lost.  They can live in awareness of their sin and fear of their future.  Apart from the Lord, people can still feel empty and alone and anxious.  Something is missing, but they don’t know where to find it.  And, no matter how much they might discern or how much they might desire, their will is not enough.  They simply do not have the ability to save themselves.

That’s why we needed a Savior.

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