April 2, 2018

Leviticus 5:11 (NLT) — 11 “If you cannot afford to bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons, you may bring two quarts of choice flour for your sin offering. Since it is an offering for sin, you must not moisten it with olive oil or put any frankincense on it.

In the ‘justice system” that we have today people have gotten a pass for wrong doing; however in God’s justice system no one gets a pass for sinning. If you were too poor to bring a lamb or goat or too poor to bring turtledoves or pigeons, you could bring flour. The point is that sin costs and sin has consequences. Forgiven sin still carries with it consequences. If I get caught speeding God will forgive but I will still have to pay the fine. If I commit adultery God will forgive me but I lost credibility, my integrity is marred and I may lose my wife; if not her I still will have lost her trust and the trust of my children.

I say all of this because all too often I hear amongst Christians, “Well I know what I am doing is wrong but God will forgive me.” It is such a flippant response to a Holy God that you wonder if they really have yielded their lives to the Lord. You wonder if they have understood the seriousness of sin. Sin is so serious that God had to create a place called hell. You wonder if they realize what it cost Jesus to forgive that sin and to purchase their freedom from the power of sin and death.

But I suppose it is like those who don’t appreciate the freedoms that we have here in the United States like: the freedom of speech, the freedom of religion, the right to bear arms, the right to vote, the right to own property, the right to cross state lines, the right to live in a democracy, etc. We take these things for granted because we are so far removed from the wars that were fought to keep these freedoms that we enjoy. My mind goes to the Battle of Normandy that was fought in World War II.

That battle was depicted so vividly in the movie, Saving Private Ryan. When our boys stormed Omaha Beach in 1944 they were cut down by machine gun and rifle fire. The water by the beach was red with blood and floating bodies and body parts. They eventually took the beach from the Germans but it cost 2,900 American lives. All in all the Battle of Normandy cost around 29,000 lives, not to mention all the wounded that survived. Many of the surviving veterans who were invited to preview Saving Private Ryan could not sit through the battle scene because of the awful memories that it provoked.

Once a year we have a Memorial Weekend to take us back to the wars so we will remember what it cost for us to have freedom in these United States. Once a year we have a Memorial Weekend so that we can appreciate the freedoms that we have and so that we will live as grateful citizens who look out for one another instead of taking advantage of one another.

Once a year we have Easter to take us back to the cross to remind us of the awfulness of sin and the price that was paid so that we could live free from the power of sin and eternal damnation. Once a year we have Easter so that we can remember to appreciate the freedoms that we have because of Jesus. Nobody gets a pass for sinning but because of the price that Jesus paid we who believe in him get a Pardon! As pardoned people let us live like we appreciate all that Christ has done for us.

Ephesians 5:1–4 (NLT) — 1 Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. 2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God. 3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. 4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.

Be Inspired Hilltop!