Monday, September 25, 2006

2 Kinds of People

It seems to me that there are two kinds of people in the world (no, this isn't the beginning of a joke!). Those who want justice from God and those who want mercy from Him.

Those who want justice from God are convinced that their good works, or merit, can earn God's favor. "Look at all I've done for You, God. I've been baptized. I'm a member of a church. I sang in the choir for a little while. I attend church on most Sundays. I try to be nice to my neighbor, and I haven't been involved in any scandalous sin," they may say. Someone might even say, "I'm in full-time ministry, Lord. What more do You want?" This kind of person actually thinks that God owes them a place in heaven because of what they've done.

Those who want mercy from God know without any doubt that they don't deserve any place at all in heaven - in fact, they're convinced that if they deserve anything it's hell. They say, "Lord, all of my righteousness is as filthy rags before You. I'm a sinner by nature and by choice, and therefore, I deserve Your wrath, judgment, and condemnation. It's only by Your grace, Lord, that You've forgiven my sins and adopted me into Your family. Without Your mercy, I'd be up the river without a paddle." This kind of person knows that heaven is a gift they don't deserve and all the praise and glory goes to Him.

Those who want mercy from God understand the gospel. Those who want justice don't. It's that simple.


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