January 24th      Available Grace        Luke 8:26 – 39

Did your parents ever call you with “that voice” and you knew you were in trouble?

I walked into the living room where my dad was holding his belt more than one and has to ask, “What did I do?” But, it wasn’t that I didn’t know I had done something wrong….I just wanted to know what they FOUND OUT ABOUT! They would say, “You KNOW what you did?”…..”yes, but what DO YOU know I did” was definitely no the right answer.

As I got older punishment changed.  I moved into the “Grounded” Phase.  Punishment became about me NOT GETTING TO GO SOMEWHERE…or anywhere.

All of us know we have messed up. We understand instinctively that we have gotten in trouble with God.

Maybe we back talked or disrespected our parents or a teacher, stole some candy, a toy or a sales lead. We lied, we gossiped, we slandered, we attacked others when we should be attacked, we cheated, we were greedy or we put ourselves ahead of others and God.

We broke the “Big Ten” or simply the “Terrific Two” ..(love God and Love Others).

God knows. Unlike our parents, we cannot hide anything from God. He knows. You are busted. Accountability is coming and today may be judgment day.

Have you made whatever it is right with God?

We talk often about God’s Grace and Mercy.

Grace- Getting what you do not deserve

Mercy – NOT getting what you do deserve.

We talk about how God has made His saving grace available to all, regardless of color, creed, financial status, origins, ancestry, language, size, intelligence level or abilities.

For God so loved THE WORLD that He gave His only begotten Son the that WHOEVER believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.

  • We know the Spirit was with John the Baptist from the womb
  • We know that God’s grace was available to Saul the religious legalist
  • We know the grace of God was available to the woman with the issue of blood.
  • We know the grace of God was available to the woman caught n the act of adultery
  • We know the grace of God was available to the blind, the lame, the crippled, the broken, the sick and the despairing.
  • But, we also KNOW our evil.
  • But, we KNOW what we have messed up.
  • But, we KNOW our failures, fouls and malfunctions
  • We know we are sinners, maybe like Paul, we feel we are the leader of the sinners – the “Worst” 1 Tim 1:15
  • What about us?

But what about someone so FULL OF EVIL that they have been drive out of society?

  • Running naked
  • Homeless, living in a cemetery
  • Someone who often had to be chained and shackled for their own protection and the protection of those around him?
  • So full of demons that their name is “legion”
  • The worst, most evil person you could ever meet
    • Someone who makes Hitler look like a girl scout planting flowers

Surely there is a limit to God’s Grace and Jesus Christ just met him head on in a cemetery, the evil guys home turf.

Maybe there is a time where God moves on from trying to correct our behavior to “GROUNDING US” – it becomes about NOT GOING PLACES – like HEAVEN?????

Are you so messed up and broken that not even God can help you now?  IS it possible to be so bad you are totally hopeless?

Thankfully that answer is a RESOUNDING NO!!

There is hope as long as you have breath on this earth!

You can make that choice for God RIGHT NOW!

But I wouldn’t recommend a delay!

None of us know the day or the hour when we will be called to account before God!

  • Jesus came to Legion
    • He was not shocked there was a man full of evil there
    • He is not shocked at your failures and foul ups either
    • God knows YOUR NEED FOR HIM
      • Do You!
    • Legion came to Jesus.
      • He knew who Jesus is
      • He knew the power and authority of Jesus over him
      • He was afraid
    • FIRST Jesus dealt with the evil
      • Asked him his name
        • Legion, for we are many
        • A Roman legion had 4,000 and 6,000 soldiers
      • Got the evil out of the man
    • THEN Jesus Healed the man
      • Fully cleansed and forgiven
        • The man then sat at the feet of Jesus
        • No longer naked, but fully clothed
        • In his right mind
      • God’s grace was more than available for the worse of the worst
        • Evil defeated
        • Humanity restored
        • Salvation imparted
        • MISSION given:
          • Return to your home, and declare how much God as done for you.”
        • Obedience (If you love me obey My commands)
          • “And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus has done for him.”
        • Today is YOUR opportunity! IT is your time!  It is your turn!

This should be good news for you!

It is NOT too late!  God loves you!

  • At your worse, Jesus will come to you.
  • At your worse, Jesus is in command
  • At your worse, Jesus can bring peace
  • At your worse, Jesus can make such a change that others are startled!
    • Born Again
    • The old, Gone
    • The New, APPARENT

 

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