I wonder, how many of you have ever used a cheese grater? Such a fantastic tool in the kitchen isn’t it! Now how many have ever tried to clean a cheese grater? Not as much fun is it. Marketing focuses us on the positive wording of this tool. Would you buy a ‘sponge ruiner’ or a ‘brush reducer’? Though that is precisely what the tool does, we focus on the positives. This can be true in our faith as well. We like to think about the positive wording of ‘Seeking out Christ’ and following Him. As if it were on our accord we found Him.
Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. – Revelation 3:19,20
Well isn’t that just taking the wind out of our sails. Jesus actually seeks us out. In fact, He never stops pursuing us. We just decide to leave a sinful unfulfilled life, and follow Him.
A comforting fact, no matter how far away we are from Christ, He will always pursue us and is never far. I wonder, what would it be like if there were distance?
And when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” – Mark 15:33,34
Now I’m not a theologian, and in this area there are many assumptions as to what this means. One scholarly belief however, is that Jesus is actually quoting Psalm 22.
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning? O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, and by night, but I find no rest. – Psalm 22:1,2
While putting this blog together and combining my thoughts I’ve come to the realization that the distance between Christ and I, no matter how far I’ve strayed, is something that I take for granted. Being distant or even cut off from God sounds absolutely dreadful.
But isn’t sin a barrier between us and God? Doesn’t sin create distance? In fact, it does. Thankfully, Mark 15 doesn’t stop at these verses. Jesus died on the cross for our sins. He single handedly broke the barrier of sin and closed the gap [or distance]. We not only get to experience closeness with God, but we have the ability to have an intimate relationship with Him as well.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. – James 4:7,8
By: Donald Porter