Monday, January 19, 2009

I Am Romans 1

Often when I read Romans 1 I am prompted to think of other people—the ones who really do suppress the truth of God with lies, the ones who murder innocent babies while they are in their mother’s wombs, the ones who deny the very existence of God. But very rarely do I read Romans 1 with my name in it. And I should. Not because I am doing those things right now. But I could be. Apart from the grace of God sustaining me, his hand would be off of my life in the exact same way as those “haters of God.”

Romans 1 should drive me to prayers of thanksgiving for my own salvation. The only reason I have not been given over completely to my sinful, depraved mind is because of sovereign grace. Nothing else. We see in verse 28 that God gave them over to their sinful passions. God is the one who gives people over to their sin and God is the one who keeps people from their sin. This is no small matter. How humbling to know that the salvation of lost souls is hinging on the keeping power of the God of the Universe.

Reading Romans 1 should make me so utterly thankful for the provision of Jesus death and righteous act, but so often I read other people into the verses. I think of my neighbor, or my friend, or the person I saw on the side of the road. I should be thankful that I am not wallowing in my sin any longer and thankful that I am now a child of the King. If my immediate thought when I read Romans 1 is someone else, then I do not fully grasp the horror of my own sin and the magnitude of God’s forgiveness. This does not mean that the passage should never apply to other people in our lives, but so often we are quickly drawn to the other person before we see how it directly applies to us. It is through the Bible’s light in our own lives that we are able to shine that light into the lives of others.

As I am reading through Romans I want to get this early on. If I don’t get this simple truth of the terrible nature of my sin and my need of a great Savior, then everything else won’t make sense. My prayer as I read through Romans is that God would open my eyes to see my Savior in greater measure this time, and that I would be thankful for the Cross like never before. One of the greatest temptation's for a believer is to grow tired of the Gospel, to find it boring. I must continually remind myself that I am Romans 1 apart from the provision of our Christ. But Christ has come and shone light on this darkened heart. Hallelujah.

"And you were dead in your trespasses and sins in which you once walked...But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ." -Ephesians 2:1, 4-5

1 comment:

debt said...

A good word and a needed reminder. Thanks, Court! So good to see you blogging again. I enjoyed my time with you.