I am paraphrasing something my Pastor said this weekend. Briefly, he made a statement about Christians and people who miss things by an inch vs those who miss it by a mile.
I am about to embark on a bible study on the parable of the Prodigal son and related parables for the next 6 weeks. The parable is about exactly what my Pastor said. Its about a younger brother who seems to be missing the mark by a mile and an obedient elder brother who misses the mark by an inch. However, in the end the younger brother is sitting at the feast of the Father while the elder brother does not seem to follow the fathers invitation to the same feast. The younger brother sees how deep his need is for a savior and the elder brother says “Look at me. I have been doing everything right. Why arent you slaughtering the fattened calf for me”. I call this elder brother attitude acting as if he was “taxpayer with rights” as opposed to being a spiritual beggar.
I have seen how elder brother, religious sin affects a marriages and its clear to me, from scripture, that Jesus speaks of this particular religious, elder brother sin as being just as deadly as the irreligious, younger brother. The difference is one person sees how great his need for a savior and other person sins require less of a savior. One person sees that he needs a savior and the other person is just a victim of someone elses sin. One persons obedience is pure joy and the others is slavic.
Martin Luther believed legalism was the default mode of the human heart and the only hope of combatting this thinking was to focus on the Gospel, “the good news” and what Jeus’ purpose was on the cross.
Thats the good news — the Gospel message is the power and righteoussness given to us from God. Through him, in view of Gods mercy I wanto to obey and I have the assurance where when I screw up will still be accepted becuause of what Jesus’ did for me on the cross.
I dont know… am I rambling?