This whole Matt Chandler series is pretty “you suck” heavy, and that isn’t (completely) because I am just a terrible, negative person. It’s because I am convinced that Christians need to know why they need a savior. Sin is too big to ignore, we don’t realize how deep our brokenness runs, it is our nature, or will. Martin Luther says it this way: “Free will, after the fall, has the power to do good only in a passive capacity, but it can always do evil in an active capacity,” — Thesis 14, Heidelberg Disputation (via The Resurgence). Essentially what this means is, we are a mess. Whatever your worldview, you can understand this, you can feel this. This is new, and this is biblical. In the Bible, there is only one person that wasn’t as messed up as you and I |
“I’ll give you an example. There was an episode of The Simpsons where Homer Simpson is reading the Bible. He comes to the end of the Bible and says, “All these people are a mess. . .except this one guy.”
…the Bible characters are there to show you how God operates in a very real world. That’s why the Bible’s so gritty. Read it. Read Genesis. It reads like a Jerry Springer show. There is about as much dysfunction as you can fathom, and God continues to invade, minister, empower and set free. If we just stayed Old Testament, in Exodus 2-3, Moses is just watching his sheep. He comes across a bush that is burning but not being consumed. God speaks to him and says, “I have seen the affliction of My people and I have heard their cries.” And Moses becomes a response to the affliction, the tears and the prayers of Israel in captivity in Egypt. This kind of thing gets established. It just keeps happening in the Bible over and over again.” -Matt Chandler
How can God do this? The Bible says that God is just, and that sin is all punished, yet somehow God ministers to these evil, undeserving people. The Gospel is that because of the cross God relates to us messy people as if we were Jesus, the one and only exception.
Listen to the entire message here: God Hears and Responds (pt.2) | Matt Chandler
and read here: God Hears and Responds (pt.2) | Manuscript (.pdf)