Friday, March 1, 2013

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Sinful but righteous in Christ

"I tell you, her sins--and they are many--have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love." Luke 7:47
 The Gospels provides us insight with  people from different backgrounds that encountered Jesus with various needs.  Some were rich and had authority while others had nothing and considered unclean. Luke records this account about a woman with a sinful past and unclean reputation.  The self-righteous Pharisees looked at this sinful woman and condemned her and wanted nothing to do with her.  Jesus looked at this woman and forgave her of her sin and accepted her, and in response she was grateful and loved Jesus much.

The awareness of our Sinful Condition
This woman’s title as “sinful” is the condition of every person, including you and me. Every human being has a sinful nature, which we refer to as the flesh.  In our flesh we commit sins constantly. Sin in God’s eyes is anything that separates us from His Holy and Righteous standard.  We think in our minds that as long as I am “doing all the right things in front of people” that God will accept me as righteous person. Paul tells us that “There is no one righteous, not even one;” (Rom. 3:20 “This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, (22) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (23). Jesus has the ability to turn your our title from “sinful” to “righteous.”  It requires us to do what the woman did, which was to have authentic repentance.  God forgives us through repentance.  The sinful woman’s weeping was an outward sign of deep repentance.  Repentance is essential for an authentic act of forgiveness.

We are responsible to forgive others as Christ forgives us.
When we are forgiven we are responsible to forgive others. Jesus challenges us to trade in our unforgiving spirit for a generous forgiving spirit.  When Peter asked how many times we should forgive, Jesus answered not just 7 times a day, but 70 times 7.  (Mat. 18: 21,22)

A new life in Christ
Turning away from our sin and surrendering to Jesus allows our repentance to be lived out.  The woman’s love and gratefulness towards Jesus showed the evidence of true forgiveness. She was spiritually healed and the wounds of her past life were healed because of the unconditional acceptance of Christ.  The relationship that existed prior to the fall of human was restored by the forgiveness Jesus extended to her.
Prayer:  Lord, help me to have true repentance that brings forth the forgiveness I need and to have a heart of gratitude to love you. Amen
 Jojy Koshy, St. Paul’s MTC, Dallas.