Old Testament Lesson
We see here in this passage that God will be and is a God of justice and judgment. There is a concept we see a lot of in our culture of "only God can judge me." What this normally means is that when someone says it, they are saying that no one can judge them, and their actions show that they don't believe that God will actually judge them.
One day, we will stand before a holy God, and one day, we will be judged. This is not fear mongering, this is not meant to scare. But, it is the truth. One day, we will stand before God, and we will have to give and answer as to why we didn't take our children to church. We will have to give an answer to why the only time we turned to God was when we needed something. We will have to give an answer to why we were not more faithful.
One day we will give an account. And, only God can judge us. But, one day, God will.
New Testament Lesson
1 Timothy 1:1-17
We see here Paul give us the good news that is the bookend to the Old Testament reading. Yes, we will be judged, but through God's grace we can be save. Our sins do not define who we are, if we repent of them. We can be saved, we can be made new, we can be restored. We can be more for God than we have been in the past. We do not have to stay as we are.
Paul himself knew what it was like to fail and fall, but he also knew what it was like to be redeemed and restored. Today, you can leave behind the failures of the past and walk in the newness of life that God offers. All you have to do is believe, follow, and obey. And life, life more abundantly, will be yours.
We see today in this passage that on Palm Sunday many welcomed and worshiped Jesus when He came to Jerusalem. On Good Friday, this same crowd that shouted Hosanna would be the same crowd that would shout crucify Him. They worshiped on Sunday, they denied by Friday.
Will you and I do the same thing? Will we have worshiped yesterday, but deny Him today?