In mentioning gifts from God, let’s appreciate his Gift of Forgiveness. Matthew 1:21 said that the Son born to Mary would be called Jesus because he would save his people from their sins. Whatever we may say the meaning of Christmas is, the Bible says it means Jesus came to save us from sin. Remember that. Never forget that. Remind people of that when they say “the real meaning of Christmas” is….
In his short story, “I’m A Fool”, Sherwood Anderson told of lying to impress a girl he met. He felt deceit necessary because the girl lived in a social and economic class above him. He indeed impressed her, but didn’t know: was it because of him or because of the story he created about himself? He did know he wouldn’t see her again when she left by train to go home. Because he couldn’t summon the courage to admit his deceit. Gateway to the Great Books, Vol. 2, 511
Humanity loves to act before God; to pretend we’re something we’re not. Defense lawyers make millions pretending that indicted criminals didn’t really commit that crime; that the sentenced criminals hadn’t really been bad as the sentence received. We all excel at trying to convince God we’re really not sinners deserving punishment. That we’re not as bad as the guy next to us. That we deserve a break, etc., etc., etc.
Jesus coming as Savior means we should never pose before God. Never explain WHY we sinned. Never justify our behavior. He loves us when we say, “Father, I have sinned against you and am no longer worthy to be your child.” He doesn’t care what sin we confess so long as we confess it, not excuse, justify or explain it. He doesn’t care what we ARE when we come to him if we’re willing to let him remake us in his Son’s likeness.
Jane Eyre thought she could return to aristocrat Edward Rochester since she had become independently wealthy by inheriting 5000 Pounds—a real fortune for that time. People think about themselves vis à vis God that way. They delay coming to Jesus because their lives are a mess, they can’t do anything right, they’re working at getting better, and when they are, they’ll become Christians.
Wrong! Never delay coming to Jesus because we’re sinners, we’re unworthy, we’re unrighteous. Only those admitting the above qualify as recipients of his grace. And only then do we get better by coming to him in our sinful state. For in forgiveness God declares us righteous. – Fini –
Books at: www.createspace.com. (Go to search, dropdown to store, Virg Hurley.)
Apologetics book: Their Own Best Defense, Volume 2, Part 1
Books also at www.amazon.com (Virgil Hurley & Virg Hurley)
The Parables of Jesus at www.createspace.com/7164741
Gift of the GIVER:Gifts for the GIVER, Vol. 2 at www.createspace.com/7551153
Their Own Best Defense, Vol. 2, Part 2 at www.createspace.com/7446349