Thursday, July 31, 2014

SERMON: Jesus is qualified to be our savior

By DAVID BILDERBACK, Special to The Ottawa Herald | 5/10/2013

In Genesis, we read the story of creation. God pronounces that his work of creation is good. We read, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.”

At this time, there is nothing corrupt or evil. God communed with man and there was perfect harmony.

In Genesis, we read the story of creation. God pronounces that his work of creation is good. We read, “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.”

At this time, there is nothing corrupt or evil. God communed with man and there was perfect harmony.

God put just one limitation on man. He was not to eat from a tree described as the tree of the “knowledge of good and evil.” God did not limit man’s ability to eat the fruit. Man had the ability to choose whether to eat the fruit. The issue was whether Adam would let God determine what was good and bad, or would seek to decide for himself the truth of what God said. What man lost in the fall was the inability not to sin.

In Luke, when the rich young ruler addresses Jesus as “Good Teacher,” Jesus says to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone” (Luke 18:19). What man lost in the fall had to be regained. That is why Jesus’ life here on earth was so important.

The New Testament teaches that Jesus was entirely free from sin. Hebrews 4:15 says that Jesus, “in every respect has been tempted as we are yet without sin.” For our salvation, it was necessary that Jesus be free from sin. He was “a lamb without blemish or spot, able to offer his precious blood for us” (1 Peter 1:19). If Jesus had been sinful, he would have needed a savior himself, and his death would not have helped us.

Where Adam failed, Jesus fulfilled the will of God. His perfect obedience qualifies Him to be our all sufficient Savior.

Jesus’ sinless life means not only that Jesus never disobeyed his Father, but that He loved God’s law and found joy in keeping it. In fallen human beings, there always is some real reluctance to obey God, and sometimes resentment, resulting in hatred at the claims God makes on us.

We, like Adam, refuse to let God determine what is good and bad. We seek to decide that for ourselves.

In Adam, all die. In Christ, we find eternal life.

David Bilderback is a Greeley resident.

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