REQUIREMENTS

Ever consider the requirements asked for everywhere you look?
Everything in life seems to have a required purchase price…from cash to information, we are required to fulfill something before receiving what we need. Think about it…even with special coupons and great “deals” I are fine lines that in the end, are requirements that must be fulfilled before we can get their wonderful advantages.

You even find it in the scriptures. In I Cor. 1:22 the apostle Paul states that the Jews required a sign before they will believe; the Greeks require logic, philosophy and debate, then perhaps we can wrestle them into believing with words. I have known people like that. And I have an answer for them. Don’t even go there. First of all, God doesn’t listen to our requirements because He already has it covered. Besides, there is no way we can get our brains around God’s wisdom; is simply doesn’t fit into our logic.

Jesus didn’t say for us to go “figure it all out”. He said to believe.

Paul answers the Jewish and Greek arguments with one word. The cross. While we stew about meeting requirements, Jesus fulfilled every requirement completely on the cross. That was the beauty of Paul’s message. What Jesus did is everything. It was everything from God’s original plan made before the world, to its fulfillment on the cross, to the power to maintain that very redemption in my life moment by moment. Jesus did it all, and He wants to continue to do it all in you and me. There is nothing I can do to enhance Jesus’ work. To even consider that thought is a gross insult to the cross.

So … what do you require; of yourself and of others? There are lists of them hanging around religious places. People are required to pray the “sinner’s prayer”. I’m not sure who wrote that one. We are required to repent daily over sins that, as far as my Bible reads, are gone. Some require daily devotions and prayer, even as far as scheduling them. Not sure where that came from, but my communication with God is ongoing, 24/7. We are required to “witness”, which can go from door-knocking to street preaching. Like the Jews of old, many people require a sign. Something about your life that proves you are a believer. If their signs aren’t there, then God must not be there either.

Okay, Paul listed requirements and God’s answer to them. But the real kicker comes in the next verse. Let me give them to you in sequence…1 Cor. 1:22-24 states…”The Jews crave signs while the Greeks revel in philosophical debate! The crucified Christ is the message we publicly proclaim, to the disgust of the Jews while the Greeks think we are wacky! THE DYNAMIC OF GOD’S WISDOM IS THE FACT THAT BOTH JEW AND GREEK ARE EQUALLY INCLUDED AND DEFINED IN CHRIST.” (Mirror Bible)

God shows up, even where He is not invited. It’s as though, while we are jabbering on about our requirements, Jesus puts cotton in His ears, allows Himself to be nailed to the cross, and includes us in the complete and total success of the cross.

Jesus came to take away the sin of the world. Let that marinate in your brain for the next year or so. I asked Holy Spirit what is the difference between me and a non-believer. It’s just that I believe; they don’t yet. For both of us, our sin has already been judged. For both of us, our sin has been punished and removed forever. Both of us are included in the complete success of the cross. I believe that. It’s right there in the word…everywhere you look you are looking into the love of God. You can refuse this amazing grace. Why that is I surely don’t understand. What about those who have refused to believe? God will never forget them, even to their last breath.

So what does God require of you? Believe. That’s all. That is enough! You will find yourself on an adventure that will take you right into the Father’s heart.

Blessings, Judy

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