This is what you might call a rhetorical question –
especially when speaking with other members of
It wasn’t the nails, you see,
That held him to the tree.
It was more than history,
He was there for you and me.
How can I possibly know that the words we have just heard in that hymn: Outrageous Love – are accurate, are true? How can I possibly stand before you now and claim that I am sure Jesus died for you and me?
The answer is a simple yet complex one.
Simple in that I HAVE FAITH – I truly believe it to be true. I know it to be true in my heart.
It is a Complex statement because there is no proof.
Those without faith cannot, do not and will not understand.
Like most here who come up front to share what God is doing in their lives (MY SPOT) I can tell you that last time we met for Thursday prayer, Kath and I were discussing who was rostered on, which particular Sunday. When Laura joined the conversation later that afternoon, she confirmed Kath was on last week followed by myself a week later. Up until that time I really had no idea what I would be saying (up here) today. It’s a familiar scenario for us all. We wait upon what we believe God to be telling us for inspiration.
I love music – no kidding! I find many of the Christian songs stimulating. Not just that I can bop along in time with the music while doing a tad of housework – yes I can do that, but the words stimulate my heart as well.
Outrageous Love is one such song…… those words really struck a chord with me. My sins nailed my Lord to that Cross. He died for what I had done (past), He died for what I am currently doing (present) and what I may do in time to come (future). But how can I possibly know?
Ephesians 2:8 was the verse of scripture I received that afternoon when we had Prayer Group.
For by grace you have been saved through faith,
and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,
The commentary that came with the scripture verse told me:
Where do we get the faith that is required for salvation? Ephesians 2:8 answers: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.” We cannot work it up—that would be our effort (Isaiah 64:6).
Consider when God first started working with us. One year we were clueless, the next year things were making sense. We read the Bible and understood it, but more importantly, we believed it.
Where did that belief come from? It was, as Ephesians 2:8 says, a gift from God. The real miracle is not that we understood, but rather that we now believed those words we understood. And this happened only because God made it possible. (Pat Higgins, excerpt)
The commentary goes on much more, but I hope you get my drift that I only know this to be the truth (God cannot lie) because He has given me the gift of faith.
Once upon a time (I won’t say in a galaxy far far away) I knew lots about God in my head. I knew what I had been taught. Then one day God gave me the opportunity (probably not the first opportunity either, but the one I accepted) to invite Him into my heart. What a fantastic transition that has become. So I now have Him residing within my heart, and I have been graced with His gift of faith. I do not have to question, I believe and know for sure.
Now I just want to say ‘Thank You Lord’, from the bottom of my heart. Will you join with me? Can you say ‘Thank You Lord’, loud and with excitement and meaning…….. Let’s do it together! Thank You Lord.