Monday, October 13, 2008

The "Be-Attitudes" Part 3

Last time we saw that those who mourned over their sin would be comforted as they drew near to the Lord. Now we will look at the hearts of those who kneel before God as they mourn.

There are no proud hearts at the foot of the cross.

We crawl there broken and contrite and begging for mercy. When we recognize the depth of our sin there is no room for conceit or ego. We are altogether humbled. Our confessed sin is nailed to the cross. Our hearts have been emptied of ourselves and now we have need for God to fill our hearts with Himself. And though we have nothing to offer and no right to ask anything of God, Jesus invites us to ask. He is now the beggar as He pleads, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing!”

And so in our humble state, we receive God’s gift of forgiveness and ask for God’s grace to be poured out on us. And indeed it is.

“Blessed are the meek! For they shall inherit the earth.”
(Matt. 5:5)

It is there at the cross that we receive salvation – the greatest gift known to mankind. Our empty heart that has longed to be filled is filled with the Holy Spirit. And our lives are changed forever.

We were once destitute, but now we are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ. But what do we inherit?

“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that being justified by His grace, we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”
(Titus 3:4-7)

We were once dead in our sins, but now we have been given life eternal – forever with God in a home prepared just for us. And one day all as we know it will be rolled up and there will be a new heaven and a new earth. And it will be ours.

“And I saw a new heaven and a new earth. For the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. And the sea no longer is. And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband. And I heard a great voice out of Heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God.”
(Rev. 21:1-3)

* * *

One of God’s great joys is to bless His children. He has planned blessings for us and He desires to pour out as many of those blessings as He can. And He is the God who owns the cattle on a thousand hills. There is nothing that exists that He does not own.

But a proud heart is so full of itself that it has no room for God. That is as true after salvation as it is before. Continued and unconfessed sin will keep us in bondage and a certain distance from God. If there is something in your life that you know God has repeatedly told you to get rid of, or something He has told you to do, stop running from Him. Whatever it is is not worth giving up the blessings of God.

If you will humble yourself and crawl again to the cross, not for salvation if you’ve already received it, but for repentance and forgiveness of your sin, God will be as faithful as always to forgive you. He longs and waits to forgive you and to bless you.