Monday, March 21, 2011

How God Responds to our Sin

We have considered this morning how the good news of Jesus is the declaration that God is light, and that this Light has begun to shine in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus and continues to shine in our life in the church for the world. And this light is getting brighter. This table is central to our declaration of this light and life. At this table, we hear the words of Life as we speak them to one another, we see this Word of Life in one another as we partake together, our hands handle this Life as we pass bread and wine to one another. This meal is a central way that God continues to manifest this Life in this world, and as we partake together, we are that fellowship, that joy, that Light for the world. But there countless churches that celebrate this sacrament who effectively cover the light by the inconsistency in their lives. And this is not the inconsistency of sin, this is the refusal to believe the gospel about that sin. One way to run a litmus test on this is to ask how you respond to sin. What do you do when the three year old throws a fit? What do you do when your wife makes a biting comment? What do you do when your husband is late coming home from work and the kids have run you ragged? What do you do when your coworker insults you in front of everyone? How do you respond when you are passed over for a promotion? Or you don’t get the bid? How do you respond to sin, to friction, to correction, to hardship? How do you respond? Walking in the light means refusing to freak out, refusing to be frazzled, refusing to be shaken, refusing to think that the world is crashing down. Walking in the light means remembering that Jesus is King, you are His beloved son or daughter, and there is absolutely nothing that can change that. But in that context, we can offer the other cheek, we can forgive again, we can let love cover it, we are free not to respond with evil. God knows our weakness and failures, and He is not worried. He invites us to dinner. We sin against Him, and He says, I love you. My life for yours. Go and do likewise.

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