2021_07_14 Insight Post- Rusty Coram
This week's reading- Luke 2
Becky and I drove to South Carolina for a quick trip to see, and check on, my mom. Along the way we saw several billboards that had messages like, “Jesus Saves” and “God answers prayer”. Then we saw one that said in bold letters “Vengeance is mine saith the Lord”. There were some smaller words on the sign as well, but I missed them since I was driving - I needed to watch the road too! As I thought about that message, I contrasted it with the announcement from the angels to the shepherds in Luke 2, “Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” Luke 2:13–14 (NLT)
Just like we talked about a few weeks ago, context is important. The vengeance passage is from Romans 12:19, and it refers to how you and I are to treat those who persecute us. We are supposed to do good to them, and never pursue revenge. The reason is that our good attitude, and behavior, may give them a wake-up call to God’s love and grace. The passage also says that in due time, God will finally and fully deal with sin and sinners. Those who accept Him through Jesus will be forgiven, and those who refuse will not. Those who humbly acknowledge God will be saved, and those who choose not to will be lost.
The peace God offers all of us came at the highest cost – the sacrifice of His son. His sacrifice paid the price of our sin and guilt. The angels’ message to the shepherds is full of hope – God offers freedom and peace to all who accept His gift. Those who don’t accept it will one day answer for the way they have lived, and will be found guilty and accountable. Until then, you and I have the responsibility and privilege of helping everyone we know, see the surpassing value of knowing the peace of God that is only found in Jesus.
“Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. 2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand…” Romans 5:1–2 (NLT)