The Ultimate Vaccine

Grace and mercy are fun attributes to study. Saying that God is graceful just feels good.

His mercies are new every morning. Good thoughts but even better theology.

We love to think about the positive characteristics of God.

He loves us.

Grace and mercy are right along side that love.

What about His faithfulness or kindness?

What about holiness? Surely this trait is no less important that any of the others?

I Peter 1:16 “For it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” ” NIV

Peter is quoting Leviticus 11:44-45.

Here are those verses:

44I am the Lord your God; consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am holy. Do not make yourselves unclean by any creature that moves along the ground. 45I am the Lord, who brought you up out of Egypt to be your God; therefore be holy, because I am holy.” NIV

So why does Peter quote these verses? They speak to the dietary restrictions God has originally placed on the Israelites. Does that apply to me? Today?

God is different than we are. I really didn’t even need to type that sentence. Of course He is!

And that is the point. God is holy.

The Holiness of God | God Speaks I Listen

In a word, holy means seperate.

God is separate from us. The impurity of sin does not come in contact with God because He is separate, or holy.

He is the ultimate vaccine!


Because God is holy, He and sin cannot abide in the same space at the same time.

When you turn on the light switch, the darkness goes away. The light is holy, separated from the dark.

Now, add in grace and mercy. Because God also has these traits, He desires a relationship with us.

His love compels Him to restore relationship with us.

His holiness (and our sin) prevents Him to be with us.

His grace provides a solution to sin.

His mercy envelops us back to Him.

They all work together.

We can holy like God (as Peter was encouraging us to do).

All because God is who He is!

30 Bible verses about God, Holiness Of

Accepting Jesus into our lives is the key.

Our very life depends on it.

Take all of these traits of God and let them roll around in your mind for a while.

God might just be calling you.

God bless you.

Negative is Positive

Are you tired of hearing about COVID?

Annoyed by the mask mandates?

Have you had your nose scraped enough?

We are all in this together so hang in there!

I bring up COVID because last Saturday night, I took my son to get tested.

We went to the drive-thru and received a test kit. My son swabbed his own nose, put everything in the right bag and placed it in the collection container. It took less than 10 minutes.

And then we waited.

And waited some more.


Let me back up a little. Here is the timeline leading up to the test on Saturday night.

Thursday: son said throat was a little soar

Friday: son awoke feeling sore throat, cough, and fatigued; stayed home from school

Friday night: son still symptomatic and now, can’t really taste

Saturday morning: son couldn’t taste or smell banana

Saturday night: took son to get tested

Now you are up to date.

More waiting.

The worst part about waiting is that we excluded ourselves from a few social events.

My wife and daughter missed a wedding shower.

We all stayed home from church.

My daughter could not go to soccer practice.

We were in limbo while we waited for the test results. Everything hinged on that result.

It came back Monday afternoon. And it was negative.

That’s one test I am glad my son failed!

But it did me an idea.

There is a test that all humans have taken or will take at some point.

It is the sin test.

We are born with sin. It is our nature. So, when it comes time to take the sin test, we will test positive for sin.

Just like the COVID test, the results will be positive if we have the virus.

There is a silver lining. We don’t need to wait for the results.

We can take a sin test right now instead of waiting until we die.

Jesus is the vaccine. He eradicates sin. Blows it away! Sin has no chance.

Ephesians says we accept Jesus by faith, not by works. This is how the vaccine is administered.

There is no copay. No lines. You don’t need insurance. And no waiting for results.

So really, a negative (for sin) can be a positive (righteous in Christ).

Over the next two or three weeks, I will explore this idea of ‘testing negative for sin”.

Ideas like righteousness, salvation, grace, and hope.

Hope you don’t mind a little waiting. (Insert winking emoji here)

Remember?

Jesus is risen! Yes!!!

Easter celebrates the empty tomb. Our faith rests on this fact. Jesus is not in the grave anymore.

The Power of An Empty Tomb —

And that brings me to a question:

Why do you look for the living among the dead?

Here is the origin of that question. Luke 24:1-8

1On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” 8Then they remembered his words.” NIV

Easter is over, at least the celebration part. But every day can be an ’empty tomb’ day.

So why do we keep going back to ‘dead’ things?

You know what I mean, right?

Old habits…

Broken relationships…

Unhealthy things…

Undisciplined living…

Note verse 8. “Then they remembered…”

The ladies recalled what Jesus had taught them. AFTER the angels spoke to them.

Is that what it takes for us? Angel visits?!?!


If you remember back to the H.E.L.P. series, you know that God is right there with us.

Through God’s assistance, we can have ‘angel visits’ on a regular basis.

  • The Holy Spirit can speak to us on a daily basis.
  • Going to church can be refreshing.
  • Reading the Bible will unlock power in your life.
  • Friends will stand by you.

These are the ‘angel visits’ that will help us remember the words of Jesus.

So while the hype of Easter is behind us and you have eaten all the chocolate from your kids’ baskets, be encouraged by the fact that we don’t need angels to visit us.

God can (and would love to) reveal Himself to you today. Look for Him even now.

God bless!

Next week starts a new series so come back for, possibly, the best two minutes of your day!

The Final Chronicle

Can you imagine what the disciples might be feeling right now? It is late Saturday night. Jesus, the teacher, mentor and friend, was crucified yesterday.

What a mixture of emotions! Fear…disappointment…failure? What about anger and loneliness?

These men and women would have thought or even expected Jesus to overthrow the Roman rule and set up His kingdom. They were supposed to be on the winning side!

But now, huddled together, in the shadows, hiding from the authorities, they wait.

Scared and confused.

What would they be waiting for? They probably didn’t know themselves.


Welcome to the Final Chronicle in this Easter series; Chronicles of Calvary.

I have written about some people and even a lamb but tonight’s post will not feature a person. Nor an animal.

It focuses on something different. Something unexpected.

A hill.

A hill called Calvary.

Calvary, also called Golgotha, is located just outside the city of Jerusalem.

Maps - New Testament Bible Maps by Generation Word

This hill, not much more than an outcropping of rock, is the turning point.

On the surface, this hill represents torture, blood, and death. In human eyes, justice is served.

But underneath all of that lies a much different story.

The script is flipped.

Yes, there is still death. Jesus dies. He had to. That was the only way.

Sin is powerful and even victorious – if left unchecked.

But God was never planning on letting it go unchecked.

He had a plan. He always has a plan.

  • Simon was part of God’s plan
  • The Centurion played his part in God’s plan
  • Both criminals were in the plan as well
  • The little lamb that represents the sacrifice for sin is central to the plan

Calvary is part of His plan.


Life is not about you or me.

It is about what God is doing and whether or not we will join Him.

And it all happened on a single hill. God won.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. I hope it was worth your time.

Mary had a little lamb…

Can you hear the tune in your head?

Mary had a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb…

Cute little guy, isn’t he?

The next character in the Chronicles of Calvary is not about a person. It is a lamb. A one year old lamb without spot or blemish.

We focused on three people for the first three Chronicles. Click on each to read their respective posts.

Simon

Centurion

Two Criminals


There are many aspects to the cross. This post is all about one particular aspect. Sacrifice.

If you have ever tried to read the book of Leviticus in the Old Testament, I am guessing that it was not easy. More so, it could have boring or perhaps really difficult to understand.

The theme of Leviticus is about the sacrificial system that God had set up starting with Moses.

Don’t worry. There will be no Levitical readings here.

Israel, after they escaped Egypt under God’s provisional hand, set about on a journey to the Promised Land.

During that journey, God had given Moses plans and instructions for a tabernacle. This would be a mobile house of worship.

When it was set up, the Levites would be the tribe that would be responsible for the overseeing of all the tabernacle duties; mainly the sacrificing.

Leviticus (named after the tribe of Levi) is the recording of how to do all the tabernacle rituals. Here is one artist’s rendition of the tabernacle.

A Tabernacle for God: Built By The Willing Heart • Spirit Life

But a bigger question that might be looming is one of ‘why’.

Why did God require sacrifice?

Simply stated: Sin was separating God from man. But because God is holy, he could not reside where sin existed. A sacrifice was used to remove the sin from a person or even the whole nation.

It was better to kill one lamb or goat rather than a person. It would not take too long to wipe out Israel if animals were not used as a sacrifice.

For the price of sin to be paid, there must be sacrifice.

Forward into the New Testament. Specifically, John’s gospel.

Here is verse 29 from chapter 1 of John:

“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” NIV


John knew who Jesus is and what his purpose was.

Jesus was to be the sacrifice for our sin.

Hebrews 9:12 states, “He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.” NIV

Jesus was the lamb that was slaughtered for our sin and he did it at Calvary.

So I guess that little song was right on.

Mary had a little lamb…