Failed judgement means failed understanding.

Today’s FDR (Mo 08/12/2014)  is Job 21 and 2 Corinthians 5:11-21

Here in Paul’s letter to the Corinthian church, we know already of this man who persecuted the early believers because he made a judgement concerning Jesus – that he was not the prophesied Messiah.  Paul (or Saul) a man who held coats and participated in the death of many believers because in Paul’s and other religious believers assessment that this Jesus was not the man who fitted the mould of Messiah as they perceived it.  So charges of heresy were able to be proved and death sentences carried out.

Yet after the Damascus Road event Paul is a changed man.  No not just changed as we see it today.  You know, the reality television shows in which the winner looses the most weight or takes on a new physical look and becomes a changed person.  This is change from the soles of Paul’s feet to the hairs on his head, and throughout his soul, mind and heart.

Today in Ian’s sermon he made mention of Billy Graham’s 1979 crusade in Sydney.  A quick internet search about this crusade provided an Audio company, JPJ, who furnished much of the technical support for this event.  Yet of the five comments they have received  in the last four years, three are from people who came forward at this crusade or did later as a result of the Holy Spirit moving them.. We know that there were many more.  You and I are privileged to hear frequently of the working of God in others lives that causes them to make their own commitment to follow Jesus.  So too we are privileged to have a part in people coming to believe in Jesus through our own mission efforts.

Paul seeks, in this passage, to give argument for his ministry of reconciliation to those who do not know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.  He lists three reasons for his mission in this way.  From 4:14 – Conviction, from 5:11 – Fear, and from 5:14 – Compelled by Jesus love.  For Paul is compelled by this great Love to hold fast, without letting go, to belief in Jesus as the Messiah and flowing on from his essential belief he must preach about Jesus as a result.

This love to which we must hold fast and respond is expressed in George Matheson’s hymn (1882) as:
O Love that wilt not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in thee;
I give thee back the life I owe,
That in thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.

 

Job in his reply in chapter 21 shows that his friends have failed to understand and judge correctly what is really happening to him.  While making his case in the major part of this chapter Job turns their argument on its head by showing that whether an evil person is well satisfied (v23 & 24) or poor and deprived (v25) they all face the same end.  In a grave, side by side (v26), facing judgement before God.  So the answers provided by his friends are a falsehood to Job (v34).

Glenn

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4 thoughts on “Failed judgement means failed understanding.

  1. Thank you Glenn. Verse 17 should be a very personal verse for every believer it certainly is for me.If you have encountered Jesus you can never be the same again. If you have encountered the love of Christ, and you now belong to Him, the divine exchange has occurred and you are a brand new person. The first to notice will be those closest to you. If there has been no change then we should ask,” Am I really saved”? Not every believer has had a Damascus Road conversion, but I did. And I remember people saying that I had changed. It was no longer always about me. My mouth no longer desired to tell dirty jokes. I remember going through my wardrobe and giving away any clothing that now I felt was no longer suitable. My behaviour needed changing and I was given both the desire and the grace to make drastic changes in my life and change bad habits. My poor husband who certainly didn’t marry a Christian but somebody very different to a Christian was the first to say something and it wasn’t always encouraging. Sometimes people don’t like it that you now follow the teachings of Jesus its not always appreciated!! They are ashamed of this change and can make life very difficult. But somehow Jesus gives you the grace to press on. The guilt and shame that I was carrying was taken away by Jesus. My sin was no longer held against me and I was given a fresh start in this world. Freedom for the first time to be the person that I was created to be not whom others thought I should be. And I was discipled, trained by other passionate Christians who kept pointing me to Jesus. I praise God for them!!

    • Thanks Connie for your thoughtful comment and telling of your own response and support. Many have had less dramatic conversions than Paul had. From these too have resulted the same committed outcomes as those who have been converted in other forms. Such is the working and love of God for all people and for me these variations in conversion forms helps describe the breadth of His fantastic love for us all. For us all to be saved.

      • Yes it’s what happens AFTER conversion that matters. Our sanctification process of becoming more like Jesus. Some of us (me) have a long way to go!!!

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