This past weekend, a couple of incidents took place that got me thinking. One involved the senseless killing of a pro athlete in another city that I read about. The other event was local. It could have been fatal, but the gun pointed at the person did not go off. If I were to go into any detail, all would agree that these were mindless crimes.
Sad but true, events like these are typical of every weekend in America. We are not even shocked anymore.
I hate to see the course our world is on. The end can only turn out disastrous. But there is no simple answer to the problem. In a word, the problem is sin. The rampant crime, drugs, lack of integrity in government, and immoral lifestyles that characterize our world today are only symptoms; the real problem is sin.
The good news is that we are not without hope. God has sent His Son as the solution to the problem. Not A solution but THE solution.
A microcosm of our problem and the solution can be seen in an Old Testament account. During their journey toward the Promised Land, the people of Israel spoke against God and Moses. This they did because they did not like the route they were taking in the wilderness. So God sent fiery serpents that bit many of the people. These serpents had the sting of death, causing some of the people to die.
That divine response got those complainers’ attention. They went crying to Moses who in turn prayed for the people. So God instructed him to make a serpent and set it upon a pole. “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looks upon it, shall live,” God said (Numbers 21:8).
So here is what Jesus says about Himself: “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:14-15).
Notice that in order for this plan to work, Jesus must be lifted up. That’s where the church comes in. We must lift up—exalt, magnify, promote—the person of Jesus as the only solution to the world’s sin problem. Jesus says when we do that whosoever believes on Him would not perish but will live forever.
Whether they that are lost admit it or not, they have been infected with the sting of death. It is called sin. We all received that sting as a result of the transgression in Eden. That sting is 100% fatal, unless the proper cure is administered. Jesus is that only cure. This truth lies at the heart of the message we have been called to proclaim to a dying world. And Jesus says when we so lift Him up, He will draw all men and women to Himself (John 12:32).
Copyright © 2016 by Frank King. All rights reserved.