Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Edifier du Jour-Romans 9:30-33(NASB)
30 What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, attained righteousness, even the righteousness which is by faith; 31 but Israel, pursuing a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law. 32 Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as though it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone, 33 just as it is written, "BEHOLD, I LAY IN ZION A STONE OF STUMBLING AND A ROCK OF OFFENSE, AND HE WHO BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED."
Keep this in mind as we finish celebrating the Christmas season; the baby Jesus isn't as threatening as the adult Jesus. The baby brings peace on earth and good will to men (or to men of good will), while the empty tomb of Easter gives the non-believer the Liar-Lunatic-or-Lord question. The babe in a manger doesn't question whether we know him or not. Sweet little Jesus boy doesn't chide us about lusting in our hearts or call us hypocrites. We give him expensive but affordable gifts rather than our whole lives. People embrace Jesus at this time of year, but not at the other times of the year; at Christmas, the manger scene is at least a supporting player to Santa; the empty tomb isn't even on radar between the bunnies and the eggs on Easter. So use this opportunity to talk about Jesus as the one who died for our sins; when the Wise Men come up, point out that the gift of myrrh (a burial ointment) spoke of how his death was the key.

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