Anybody out there remember the old game show "What's My Line?" This may be going too far back for many of you, but, it was a pretty funny game show, with a cast of blindfolded stars who tried to guess who the famous guest was, based on yes/no answers to questions the cast asked each guest. It was fun to see the confusion on the faces of the blindfolded guests, who could only go by the very limited, one word answers of the guests, to try to guess their identify.
This morning, I was listening to a gifted expositor of the Word of God teaching on the encounter that Moses had with God in Exodus, as God informed Moses of His discontent with the people of Israel. "I have seen these people," the LORD said to Moses, "and they are a stiff-necked people." Exodus 32:9
The trouble with God is that He always knows who we are and calls us out on it, time and time again! The Bible is packed with the honest stories of God's people lying, murdering, committing adultery, erecting idols...all the while strutting around calling themselves "God's people"! It is tempting to congratulate ourselves on how unlike "them" we are!
If I were on the game show, it might go something like this!
Are you a believer in Jesus Christ? Absolutely! (God smiles!)
Are you a sinner? Well - uh - maybe! (God is still smiling!)
Do you have any idols in your life? Of course not! (God is nudging me under my ribs...!)
Do you ever resist the Word of God in your life? Of course not! (God is laughing wildly now!)
Do you like to think of yourself as a "good christian"? Of course! I'm on firm ground now! (God is staring at me with those penetrating eyes of His...)
Do you think of yourself as a "stiff necked people"? Huh? How dare you! (God is smiling again...)
Do you keep all of the rules of God's Word? I don't think I like this game anymore...
Are you a prodigal? Who me? Why am I sweating like this?!
Are you a sinner saved by grace? Yes! Yes! Finally! I thought you'd never get there! Yes, that's me!
My God has come very close to me now. He is covering me all over with His love. He is laughing with me at the extravagant truth of the Gospel, that even a great sinner like me is saved by His grace!
That's just the scandalous truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Even a sinner who is standing with her toes touching the door posts of hell, about to cross over, is not too far out of reach of the God who loves us deeper than the deepest, darkest sin in our lives.
I speak from experience. I am that one that He saved when I thought all was lost...
That is my prayer for you. May you come to know Who it is that loved you enough to die for you. May you find Jesus.
"And may you have the power to understand,
as all God's people should,
how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is."