Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Ordinary Time: Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Old Testament Lesson

Joshua 2:15-24

She of course is Rahab. Bless her heart, she hadn't led the best life up to this point. She was a prostitute, she was an outcast. She was the kind of person that if she came to church, we may think, what is she doing here?

But, she was the one that helped the children of God in this time. She was also the one that was remembered in the hall of faith, Hebrews 11. Up to this point in her life, she had done nothing that would make you think she deserved such an honor. What she did at this point was that she was faithful.

God can forgiven anyone. God can save anyone. There is no sin to big, no stain too deep that God can't forgive and can't clean. When those of us that are "good church people." Doubt whether that nasty sinner can be saved, remember, we are not doubting the sinner, we are doubting God's grace.

And also remember, we were once that nasty sinner ourselves. But for the grace of God, we still would be. For, none of us were born Christian, we all had to at some point in our lives make a decision to follow Christ. At some point, we are all separated from God. Because we have been there, we should do all that we can to make sure that all come to that knowledge of Jesus Christ.

New Testament Lesson

Romans 11:13-24

Let us never think more of ourselves than we ought. Paul reminds us today that we were grafted into God. And if God did not spare others, why are we so proud to think that He would spare us? He says we should not stand proudly, but with awe at what God has done for us. The worst mistake that we can make is to think that we deserve our salvation; to think that we have earned it. None of us, no matter how much good we have done (and I'm not talking about just coming to church on occasion) none of us deserve anything but God's judgement.

That's why its called grace. We don't deserve it. It is a gift. It is given for our salvation and for our growth in Christ. Today, stand in humility and thanks, for out God has lavished amazing grace upon us. Charles Wesley put it like this in his great hymn And Can it be That I Should Gain

Amazing love! How can it be
that thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be
that thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Gospel Lesson

Matthew 25:14-30

There are so many ways we could approach this parable. But, my favorite may also be the simplest. All that we have has been given to us by God for His glory. If we do not use it, He will take it and give it others. Be it musical talent, speaking talent, financial resources, whatever. If we as people, and if we as churches bury what our Lord has given us, He will take it and give it to someone that will use it for His glory.

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