Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day 138: Hello Ollie (Oliver North That Is)

Oliver North was in town today. A lot of people are probably saying "Who is Oliver North?", but that's okay, I had to do a refresher on the Iran-Contra Affair myself. I remember it being all over the news during my last year of high school and I remember Oliver North, but I couldn't tell you much more than that. I know, now, Mr. North is a professing Christian that is also a writer and currently on tour promoting his newest release "American Heroes in Special Operations" and had a stop today at the local Lifeway store.

Today was also the release date for Chris Tomlin's new CD, which we had pre-purchased, so we were going to Lifeway to pick that up. While there we purchased the Oliver North book and I stood in the line to await his signing the book. It is a gift for someone this Christmas, so I will not divulge any more on the subject.

I do not know what Mr. North's part in the whole Iran-Contra issue was, nor does it really define who this man is. It was a very public issue at the time as he stood on trial before the world. Was he guilty? It's not for me to say, but he walks the streets today. What Mr. North has to look forward to in the future though is of grave importance, actually the most important thing to every human - judgment day.

We will all stand before the Lord on judgment day. This is not a made up event to scare people to act "good", it is the day that everyone will be judged, by the God that already knows your infractions of His laws. If you are a Christian you will be judged for what you did to further the kingdom, what in your life glorified God and will be rewarded for those things. I would venture to say that you will get rewards for things you said or did that you never knew the impact of for the kingdom.

Those that really need to heed this day are those that do not know God. This is the majority of humanity as you will be judged for every sin you have ever committed. Because you have chosen to try and work your own way to glory, you will be judged accordingly. Scripture says that every idle word that you have ever spoken you will be held accountable for (Matthew 12:36 ). This is just your speech, but your words flow from your heart, so it actually your heart condition that will be on trial. Jesus equated lust with adultery in Matthew 5:27-30 and John equated hatred as murder in 1 John 3:15, so this shows that sin is a heart matter. Usually what we see as sins are just the outward manifestations of the persons heart. This is the nature of a person that does not know God and has not repented of their sins and turned to God and from their sinful lifestyle.

So many people want to raise one sin up above others, but that is not so according to scripture. James 2:10 tells us that if we have broken even a single law we are guilty of them all. Those are some pretty high standards, which in our sinful, fallen state we are unable to attain this lofty goal. Just a defiant word to your parents as a toddler makes you guilty. See, we are born in sin (Psalm 51:5), it is our very nature to sin and to hate God. We continue that course through our lives, buying our way to hell with our sins. Our nature is sin and we do it very well. Until God bestows His grace on someone and saves them we will continue to follow that road. Until we repent and turn from our sins and to that Holy God we are mired deep in sin and unable to truly love and trust in God. But the day you are saved it all changes. The scales fall from your eyes and you see clearly, you now love God, because He first loved you (1 John 4:19). You are not only saved from hell, you are saved from a life that did not bring glory to God and the sin that He hates. Trusting in the work of Christ and His atonement for our sins is the only way to a right relationship with God. He paid it all to reestablish the relationship with us that were born of the first Adam.

How great is that? God loves us enough to send Jesus to die in our place, so that we can be reconciled to Him. He paid it all and He did it all. All we can do is trust in that and in Him and we will be saved.

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