Day 37: Wednesday, 8 April – Nisan 14 5780 (Erev Pesach)
You used to be far from God. Your thoughts made you his enemies, and you did evil things. But his Son became a human and died. So God made peace with you, and now he lets you stand in his presence as people who are holy and faultless and innocent.
God makes peace with mankind. Under the covenant of the Law the way you stayed holy was to be holy and righteous in everything you did. It was a struggle, and everyone failed. We failed because we are by nature sinful people.
We must clear up something that causes serious problems in accepting what I’ve just written. To say that we are sinful people is not to say that we are bad people. The vast majority of us strive to be good, and we can all think of some good people, people who shine out amongst us. We might want to be good, too – I don’t think many people choose to be bad. However, even the nicest people are by nature sinful. Being sinful is not an attitude, it’s a state of being.
We were born sinful, prone to failure and subject to the Law. By following the demands of the Law you find yourself constantly striving to achieve, and paying the penalty if you do not. It’s like being on the wrong side of the door, walking away from it and paying to get back.
There was a way back to God which involved payment in blood. The wages of sin is death. But the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Jesus gave himself up to death, and in so doing paid the price that God demands. Jesus has brought about a new covenant with God. Kings attach a seal to a document to identify its authenticity. We sign agreements and contracts, our signature representing our commitment to whatever the document states. This new covenant between God and man is sealed by the blood of Jesus.
God has made peace with us – we are no longer under condemnation, no longer enemies of God, but adopted into his family. We may enter through the door that is Jesus. Being decent folks who are acutely aware of our own failings and who would prefer to pursue modesty lest we take a fall, we are apt to disbelieve Paul’s statement that before God we may stand as holy and faultless and innocent. If you have trouble with this it’s possibly because you have not yet let go of your sinful nature and handed it all over to God. Do not deceive yourself – you can’t handle it, you can’t sort it out, you can’t put it right yourself. And the silly thing is, God doesn’t expect you to. Reads the words above out loud until you are familiar with them and repeat them to yourself until you grasp in your heart, in your mind and in your spirit the amazing thing God has done for you in Jesus.
You do not now stand outside the door. In Jesus you stand in God’s throne room.
Are you celebrating Passover tomorrow?
Are there crumbs of sin that you still cling on to? How can you get rid of them?
Father God, I should come before you in fear and trembling because of the sin that you see in me. But you have loved me from the start, the very start of all creation, and planned and carried out an escape plan that releases me from the prison of sin. You sent Jesus to set me free. Amen.
Scripture taken from the Contemporary English Version © 1991, 1992, 1995 by American Bible Society, Used by Permission.