Luke 1:56-80

Luke 1:56-80

I like to interpret everything from the foundation of Who God is, and God is love. Isn't that what we're told? God is love, so everything God does is done as a loving response from His heart to us. So, if He withholds something from us, it's His loving response to us.If He has vengeance on us for something that we’ve done, it’s His loving response to us. It says, those that He loves, He disciplines. But, everything He does is a response of love to us. Not because we’re foul and ugly and sinful to the core. He doesn’t respond to us because of that. He responds to us because of His great love, because of His great mercy…

One of the things I see is lacking in our world today that has been lacking in our world since the beginning is the knowledge of salvation. If you are saved today, if you have asked Jesus Christ into your life, you have a knowledge that needs to be shared. One of the things that happens so often is we receive this knowledge but never share the knowledge. We are the recipients of this knowledge and never share this knowledge. We take the knowledge and use it for ourselves, and then watch people around us die for lack of knowledge. I’m not telling any one of you that you need to go out and evangelize. That’s not what I’m saying. I’m not saying you need to raise up and do tent meetings and bring people crying before the Lord on their knees. I’m just saying, if you have salvation, you have knowledge that needs to be shared. And even if that knowledge comes across in the form of saying, “I am a believer in Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus died on a cross for my sins, and I’ve received Him,” and you leave it there, you have shared the knowledge of salvation with another person. It is not up to you to save them. It is up to God’s Holy Spirit to save them, but He has given you knowledge that needs to be shared…

This is another thing I experience a lot in our society, and especially among Christians. We understand that we have salvation, that God loves us, and that God has forgiven us for our sins, but we find it very difficult to forgive others for their sins. In fact, people who have been the recipients of God’s love and forgiveness oftentimes are the ones who fail to give that love and forgiveness to others. I’ve been given great forgiveness in my life, and I continue to receive forgiveness in my life because I’m a man who blunders through life, and I make mistakes, and I do stupid things, and I have to stop myself when I’m looking at somebody else who’s doing something stupid and blundering through life and say how horrible they are. How dare I! How dare you. If you have the salvation of Jesus Christ in your heart to look at somebody else who is in the need of the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sin, and you judge them and condemn them because they’re sinners.

We have a responsibility to take the knowledge that we have been forgiven and let others know that they, too, can be forgiven. That’s what salvation is all about. We are lost in this world because we are all in sin. We are lost in this world because our flesh was corrupted from the moment we were conceived in our mother’s womb. We had no choice coming out but to sin. And most of us, for many years, walked in darkness and struggled through that darkness because we had no clue that we could be forgiven. And yet I look around and I see people who were in my life in my early years who had that salvation, but yet looked at me as a lost cause, worthless, why bother. Have you ever thought that? It has passed through my mind on an occasion or two, and then I stop, and I kick myself in the butt, and I say, “Don’t ever allow that thought there again.” No one, I don’t care who they are, is a lost cause in God’s eyes. I at least need to share knowledge with them. The knowledge that they can be forgiven, that God desires to forgive them, and that God wants them to have salvation. And how does that salvation happen? Through the Person of Jesus Christ. Getting to know Him and receiving Him into your life…

God doesn’t hate us. God doesn’t want to smite us. God isn’t condemning us. He’s looking through eyes of mercy, desiring to interact with us… I look in my life and I see that it is God’s mercy that I need. It is His salvation that I need, and there is no amount of good works that I’m going to do to make God love me any more than He already does. But if there’s a gap between me and God, it’s not a gap that God formed between us. It’s a gap that I formed. I’m pushing away, not He’s pushing away. He’s asking us to come… This is how God desires to interact. He comes to us, and He says, “Come now, let you and I reason this thing through. Let Me talk to you, and let’s reason this out.” Sin is what has to be dealt with.

Dave Elkins

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Luke 1:39-55