Thursday, September 1, 2011

Who does God help?

"I need help!" Over the past three months those words have been spoken by people in Minot perhaps more than any other. As one in need of skilled help with the reconstruction of my house, I know that feeling as well as anyone.

The Bible is clear that even more than help from other people, we need God's help. Hebrews 1:2-3 reminds us that Christ is the One through Whom God made the world and upholds the universe by the word of His power. Therefore, our need for Him is ultimate and constant. Without Him we would have no life, no breath, no purpose, no friends, no food, no joy and no hope. For all things we need God's help.

If you're a growing Christian you know that need, and you want God's help. You want Him to help you fight sin and learn to hate it. You want Him to protect you and care for you and your family and church. You want Him to help you live wisely and walk in the Spirit and bring Him glory. You want His help.

Will he help you? According to 2 Chronicles 16:9 we discover how to secure God's help with certainty: "For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward Him." Who will God help? Those whose hearts are blameless toward Him. But Jeremiah 17:9 says that "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick...." Hmmm. What are we to make of that?

If our hearts are naturally depraved and extensively so, then for whom are God's eyes searching to help, to strengthen and support since none of us qualify? I Corinthians 1:30-31 may give us a clue: "He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption. Therefore, as it is written, 'Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.'" The gospel comes to our rescue here since we are unable to fulfill the standard which God set in 2 Chronicles for those He's looking to help. We are not blameless, but Jesus was. Not only that, Jesus was blameless in our place, covering us with the robe of His righteousness.

I arrive at two conclusions from this:

1. God is eager to strengthen and help those who delight in the blamelessness of Christ on their behalf. God helps those who remember, speak, live and feel passionately about the gospel.

2. Since every Christian - even when we're not delighting in the gospel - IS irrevocably covered by the blamelessness of Christ, God the Father blesses us with the fruit of His help (the promise of 2 Chronicles 16:9) based on our faith in His Son.

For a forgiven sinner like me, who needs a lot of help every day, that's very good news.

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