Convenient Excuses

Jesus said "These things I do, you will do.". Jesus said "They will lay their hands on the sick and they will recover.". Jesus said "Whatever you ask in my name, believing, you will have it.". These statements of Jesus are simple and to the point. They are not shrouded in mystery; they are plainly spoken and easily understood. And yet we come up with all kinds of excuses why we can't do what He said we could do! We say that this person remains sick because God is working out something in their life. We say that God doesn't heal anymore, that miracles were just to prove that Jesus was God. We say that we don't know everything that God is doing and it may be His will that this person be sick for awhile to teach them something.
I say, BALONEY!!! Let's be honest! We make excuses because we don't really believe what Jesus said. We make excuses because we think it's just too good to be true. We make excuses because we're afraid we'll try it and it won't happen and then we'll look foolish.
The simple truth is that we can do what Jesus said we can do (actually, we must do what Jesus said we can do!). We have many "religious" leaders who have conned us into believing that we need to let them explain the scriptures to us because they are "more knowledgeable" about the things of God than we are and they say we can't do those things that Jesus said we could do. (Sounds like the same trick the priests pulled on people during the Dark Ages to me!) We believe them because we think they are smarter than us (just because someone "sounds" smart doesn't mean they are smart). When will the people of God quit listening to these excuse-makers and believe Jesus?! Don't expect me to believe your human reasoning instead of Jesus' plainly spoken words! When Jesus says I can, all your reasons why I can't don't matter!


Pardoned or Paroled?

Some people think that God pardoned their sins when He saved them. They seem to think that God just said "I understand that you can't pay for your sins and since I'm a loving, merciful God, I'll let it all slide this time. You're sins are pardoned." No fuss, no muss, no need for shed blood or a Saviour. No need to be faithful or holy or righteous. God signed the pardon and they can live any old way they want.
Some people think that God paroled them when He saved them. They feel like they have to watch every little step they take lest they sin again and thereby violate parole. God is watching very closely to catch them so He can ship them off to Hell.
What extremes! And neither one is right! The Bible doesn't say we were pardoned or paroled. It says we were bought with a price! God didn't just "let sin slide"; Someone had to pay. Jesus shed His blood for us; He paid the debt we couldn't pay! And God isn't looking over our shoulders just waiting for us to "violate parole" either. He said He doesn't want us to sin, but if we do, we have an advocate with the Father - Jesus Christ! If we repent and ask to be forgiven, Jesus is faithful and just to forgive us!
We need to stop getting off into extremes. There's a ditch on both sides of the road, you know! Stay with the word of God, not someone's opinion of the word of God. It really is a simple gospel, but it's not a cheap gospel!


Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

There's an old gospel song that says "Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to die." Ain't it the truth! Let me add to that: Everybody wants a Saviour, but nobody wants a Lord; Everybody wants to be in authority, but nobody wants to be under authority; Everybody wants their sin debt paid, but nobody wants to hear about the blood; Everybody wants God's covenant blessings, but nobody wants to keep the covenant. I say everybody, but actually there are a few who want what God wants. But the great majority (Christians and non-Christians) want to have their cake and eat it too. They want what they want, but they're not willing to do anything for it. "Paying the piper" is so politically incorrect! The government owes them a living and God owes them a blessing.
Well, guess what?; The government may give them a living and ask nothing in return, but God will not. Salvation is the only thing that's free and even that requires that a person repent and have faith to believe! Jesus said that anyone who follows Him must deny themselves and take up their cross daily. God the Father said that He would bless those who keep his commandments and walk upright before Him.


Back to the Garden

When Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden, they had a choice: will I depend on God and trust Him to take care of me or would I rather be my own boss and make my own way? We all know what decision they made. We have all criticized them for doing what they did and "making it hard on the rest of us".
When Jesus died and offered His blood on the mercy seat in Heaven, God accepted that sacrifice as the payment for the sin of the whole world. Anyone who accepts Jesus as their Lord and Saviour is forgiven of sin because of Jesus' sacrifice. We are given the free-will decision to accept Jesus' sacrifice or reject it. Do we not then have the same decision to make that Adam and Eve had to make in the Garden? Sure we do! Do we trust in God and let Him be our master or do we live our lives dependent upon ourselves?
Christians have made the decision to trust in God and let Him be Lord of their lives, but guess what? Christians have to make that same decision every day! Not that Jesus is their Saviour, but that we will trust in Him and let Him be Lord of our lives! We are tempted every day to take matters into our own hands instead of letting God handle everything. Paul tells us to offer ourselves as living sacrifices every day unto God!
We can't blame everything on Adam and Eve. We can stay in the garden of God's love and blessings if we decide every day to let Jesus be both Saviour and Lord!