Super Bowl Sunday February 3, 2013
As I walked out of church this morning I was overwhelmed with gratefulness. What was I thankful for? (1) I was so thankful that God had led me to Grace Life Church and placed me there. The limitless and matchless grace of God is always preached, proclaimed and practiced there. These people accept me, love me and bless me. What a privilege to be part of this body. (2) I had heard a wonderful message on the outrageous, scandalous and incredulous love and grace of God. Ralph Harris, author of God’s Astounding Opinion of You, gave it, which is probably the best book on grace I have ever read. (3) Julia and I had been invited to watch the Super Bowl at a friend’s house in his home theater with a 120 inch screen. (4) I have the awesome privilege of being in a ministry where I get to tell people NOT what to do to get free from addiction, but the great, good and glorious news that God has already set them free (Gal. 5:1) and that they are dead to sin, freed from it and Christ is their life (Rom. 6:6, 7, Col. 3:4).
I get to tell them that it has already been done and there is absolutely NOTHING for them to do, but believe that IT IS FINISHED and the old sin-loving sinner they were is crucified, dead, buried and gone and they no longer live, but Christ lives in them and is their very life and will live their life (Gal. 2:20). Think about that. If that is true and it is then we are delivered and set free from sin, the devil, the world and the flesh. I am not saying that there will not be a struggle. Of course there will. As we know our feelings, circumstances, family, friends, etc. all testify with great conviction to the opposite. But the struggle, the fight if you will is a fight of faith I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith (2 Tim. 4:7). That is always true. You and I have been given everything we need for life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3), and we experience it when we believe it and receive it.
Watching the Super Bowl on that 120-inch screen was really something but nothing compared to what Christ did on the cross. Not to mention that He did away with all sin, but He did away with the old you and me. I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. We no longer live (Praise God) but Christ lives in us and is living our life. We are invincible, bullet-proof and totally and radically free. Yes, it is hard to believe, but it is true truth and real reality and it seems few believe it. When Jairus, the Synagogue ruler’s daughter was dying, the people said to him, “Why bother Jesus anymore, your daughter is dead” (Mark 5:35). I love the next verse, Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”