When reading a book the other day, I ran across this expression that I had never seen or heard before. It was simple, but brought clarity to the subject of the loss of passion in the life of a believer. You may not know the name, John Newton, but you know his song, “AMAZING GRACE.” This is his story in his own words. “I went to Africa that I might be free to sin to my heart’s content. I was a wild beast on the coast of Africa, but the Lord caught me and tamed me. For on the that day, March 10th, 1748, the Lord came down from heaven on high and delivered me out of deep waters.” Newton called himself, “The Slave of Christ”. Can you re-member the day of your conversion? Salvation is like coming to Christ, like a fighter who has been knocked out returning to his senses, or a patient coming who has been under anesthesia coming to consciousness, or a dead man coming back to life.
With this in mind, we can see that sin is always a going away. Do you think that Judas is a good example of this, “He went out and it was night”? What about Peter, who went out and wept bitterly? The Prodigal, driven by self will and self indulgence, ended up far away from the many privileges of His Father’s house. Adam and Eve were banished, and they had to go away from the Presence of God in the Garden. Demas went away, but a stronger word was used, “Demas, has forsaken me.” What would be the ultimate banishment? What do you think would be the worse case scenario of this departure? It would have to be, “Depart from me, I never knew you.” It is hard for people to understand when I make the statement, “You cannot expect people to turn to God until they exhaust themselves, as did the prodigal”. I have met the addict who had exhausted all their resources and made the decision to return to God. Sad to say, I have also met the successful man and woman who have not come to the end of their resource. “Where can you go when there is no one else to turn to”, asked the songwriter? “I go to the Rock of my salvation, I go to the Stone the builders rejected. I know He is able! I run to the Rock.”
He is waiting on you today. “It is the goodness of God that leads men to repentance”.
This is the reason why that I AM JUST SOOOOOOOO CHRISTMAS!
We believe in you!
Your loving pastors,
Cleddie and GayNell Keith