the greatest obstacle

Downs Park Benches

When Jesus heard this, he told them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor-sick people do.  I have come to call not those who THINK THEY ARE RIGHTEOUS, but those who KNOW THEY ARE SINNERS.” (Mark 2:17)

People have pondered what the greatest sins are.  What are the biggies?  Murder, Rape, Adultery, Theft?  Sin is sin.  But the consequences of those sins vary widely.  Jesus helped me to see, when I read the above passage of Scripture,  that pride is the greatest obstacle of mankind.  Man’s desire to be ‘god-like’ caused the fall of man.  Eve wanted to be like God, and Adam watched to see what would happen when she took that first bite.  When she didn’t die, he ate it too.

In the above passage, the words that jumped out at me were, THINKS and KNOWS.  When we stop trying to create a righteousness of our own, we know we are sinners.  When we stop trying to pile enough good works on the one side, to counter-balance the bad deeds on the other side,  only then will we fall to our knees and cry out to God to rescue us from this tedious task.

“All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God.” Romans 3:23

That’s the greatest obstacle, allowing ourselves to see ourselves as we truly are.  When I was a young believer, I remember being afraid of what was inside of me.  Though I had been set free by Christ from my sin, I was still afraid to let the darkness in me be seen, especially by God.  Silly now, but that fear was so real then. I kept being told by people, “The heart is desperately wicked above all things, who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

But God lead me to a passage in the New Testament that was the remedy for that fear.

19 We will know by this that we are of the truth, and will assure our heart before Him 20in whatever our heart condemns us; for God is greater than our heart and knows all things. (1 John 3:19&20)

I remember getting in my car and driving to church in the middle of the day, tears in my eyes, and bursting through the church doors to find the pastor.  When I found him in his office, I told him what I had found.  He was excited for me too.  I just had to tell someone, and now I’m telling You.   The truth really does set you free.  I was free now, to let God begin His tedious and magnificent work of transformation, because now I didn’t need to be afraid of what He would expose…He is greater than it and already knows it.  He wants me to be free, and He wants that for you as well.   Jesus made that freedom possible.

Thank You precious Father, Son, and Holy Spirit


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