Those 80 year old men come into the gym for stimulating conversations as much as they do to ride the bikes. So I asked them a question that had been on my mind: Is ignoring the injustices of the world the worst kind of hate?
After repeating the question three times (did I mention they’re 80+ ?), their first response was that old excuse I’ve begun to cringe at, “You can’t do everything – you can’t help everyone.”
But then he added, “Did you know it’s a sin to walk the little old lady across the street?”
It’s bizarre (or a “God thing” – however you want to put it) when a pre-k Sunday school lesson and a conversation with a couple old men at the gym connect …
Have you ever noticed that in Genesis 22 when God tells Abraham to offer his only son Isaac as an offering to God, there’s no sign of hesitation from Abraham. Not that it was an easy thing for him, but that He knew God would provide. That’s what he told his son when they went up the mountain without a lamb to offer.
“No,” I said eager to hear his explanation.
Whatever we do without faith is sin, he explained, and we are told to do everything for the glory of God. So for Bill Gates to give $X to charity would be a sin if it was not done for the glory of God.
“Lots of people have a hard time understanding that,” he said, “but it’s what the Bible says.”
So our motives shouldn’t be self-centered when doing good because 1). it’s sin and 2). even the perceived obedience to God won’t hold up in the long run (it’s the “Lord, Lord did we not …” show).
I believe that Abraham’s knowledge of Who God is enabled him to obey God. He knew God is good. He knew God provides.
After all, God kept His promise to give him a child and provided Abraham with an “impossible” son.
And the next thought that comes to mind is a humbling one … God kept His promise to give His people a Messiah when He gave Mary an “impossible” Son.
If God was good to Abraham, than what has He been to us?!
He has given us a gospel of unwavering grace.
A grace that will hold up for the long run.
To rest in the unwavering grace of God’s gospel is to have firm footing in our spiritual battles against evil. Because when we know deeply Who God is and what He has done, our obedience comes from faith. It come from a desire to glorify our gracious God in whatever we do.
It’s no longer about us meeting a standard, but about offering God worship.
Obedience is our alter of worship.
worship of a God Who has provided and will provide.
And this laying our todays before God as a sacrifice of obedience to Him is a God thing.
because it’s about Him.
it’s because of Him.
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship [i.e. the only ‘reasonable’ thing to do as a result of God’s merciful provision].” Romans 12:1, ESV [KJV]