A Unique Purpose




By GF Herrin


Expanding on the passage (Acts 17:26-27) that was cited in the previous post, we see that not only is the uniqueness of God in view, but also in scope is His unique purpose for every human being on Earth through all time, including you!

He marked their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands.  God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us” (Acts 17:27).

Did you know that God’s purpose for putting you in this particular time is so that you seek Him out and call on Him and be saved? If you have already done that and count yourself as a child of God, then you have a unique purpose along with every other member of His church collectively known as the Bride of Christ.

Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”

Titus 2:14 says, (Christ) “who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.”

1 Peter 2:9 says,  “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”

This reference from 1 Peter quotes Isaiah 43:20, which speaks of Israel’s unique place as God’s chosen people. Peter’s evangelism mission was largely targeted to Jews, so his audience would have understood his citing the passage. The reader can understand that the ultimate fulfillment of the passage with reference to the nation of Israel will ultimately be fulfilled at the conclusion of Daniel’s 70th week (Dan. 9:24-27).  However, one can also understand that both Jewish and Gentiles believers are a chosen people, redeemed to live in God’s light, “ambassadors for Christ (2 Cor. 5:20) who carry out deeds that represent Jesus to a lost world.

We must remember that Christ suffered for sinners, paying the sin debt once and for all. As Christians living life daily, we need to remember the suffering that Christ endured to redeem us.  Isaiah writes, “Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:4-5).

But, “Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand” (Isa. 53:10).

It is clear that Christian believers are Christ’s spiritual offspring spoken of in this passage, who, after being born again should not live selfishly for themselves but should live selflessly in service to Him.

2 Cor. 5:14-15  says, “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.”

What needs to be emphasized here is that this is a unique purpose for those that God calls His own, His redeemed.  That purpose is not to just go to church once a week and keep to ourselves, slugging it out to survive the rest of the week. That purpose is to do good deeds, love others, show others Jesus and glorify God. In doing this is found God’s ultimate blessing and intimate connection with Him.




A Unique God

By GF Herrin

Biblical Christianity has a uniqueness that sets it apart from all other World Religions and world views.

The religions of Buddhism, Hinduism, Humanism, Islam, Jehovah’s Witnesses are all dependent on man working his way to some enlightened state that is dependent on what the individual has done.  Humanists stress a belief in oneself as the great key to achieving success or self-actualization in life. Indeed, go to most any middle or high school function and inevitably you will hear a message stressing that belief.  Humanists and most mainstream media beat a drum to glorify humankind and its achievements.

Christianity, though, stresses the fact that humans have failed and are inherently sinful and cannot lift themselves out of the sin pit that we have fallen into.   The Bible gives us a portrait of a unique God who is knowable, findable and merciful and who promises the repentant sinner “You will seek me and find me when you search for Me with all your heart”.

This God became man to show us how to live and to die as a substitutionary atonement for our sins on the cross. But His journey did not end there.  We can take comfort in our daily life that the resurrected Lord Jesus is a suffering servant who can understand our problems today because of the pain He underwent in His life. He is a high priest that we can pray to because He is a “man of sorrows acquainted with grief” (Isaiah 53:3) who experienced the pain of life and had to overcome great trials.

If you are a born again believer in Christ, when you encounter trials (rest assured you will) be comforted in  knowing that you can pray and cry out to Him who experienced every kind of human pain, trial, and humiliation possible.

This is not a distant aloof God who is not knowable but as Paul said to the people in Athens, “From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands.  God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us” (Acts 17:26-27).

What kind of God is this? He is a God who is Righteousness, Holy, Merciful and Good.  Rest assured, you can cry out to Him today through Jesus to be set free and to be comforted and healed.





7 Behaviors of Highly Effective Believers


By GF Herrin



Several years ago Stephen Covey wrote a book called “7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, a self-help book that impacted many in the business community. In the 1990’s as an enterprising individual, I needed to do a project for my career development at the training consultant job had at the time. I remember reading that book and thinking oh, that’s nice. Nothing too amazing but helpful nonetheless. Well, about a week ago or so, a Christian brother and I did an informal discussion of the first few verses of 1st Thessalonians chapter 5, while encouraging each other to keep looking for the Lord Jesus’ return. As I read the rest of the chapter, though, it occurred to me that Paul was urging us believers on to live out certain behaviors while we look for the King. In living for God, looking for the Messiah’s return, and also in being a highly effective Christian, there are 7 key actions that we as born again believers can perform in our daily lives:


16 Rejoice always, Notice that Paul doesn’t say, rejoice when you feel like it or rejoice when you are in the mood, or rejoice on Fridays! He says to the Thessalonians (and us) Rejoice always! We see an example of this rejoicing in Acts 16:24-30 when Paul and Silas are thrown into prison. Verse 25 says, “But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. “ Paul and Silas, locked into bondage in a dreary prison, and nearly naked, were (against all worldly logic) rejoicing and praising the Lord. Their behavior got attention from the fellow prisoners and the jailer who clearly wanted what they had. The same applies to us in the workplace, on the street, in the mission field, at school, and anywhere else. If you rejoice, especially during tough times you are going to get noticed by people who want what you have: Living water given to you by the eternal resurrected Christ.


17 Pray without ceasing

We as Christians should not limit our prayer life to when we are at home. Pray in your car on the way to work, on the phone when you are consoling a friend, with your kids when you begin a vacation, at your desk when you begin your work day, or during a crisis when you don’t know how to handle a challenge in your job. Pray continuously and tell the Lord that you are totally dependent on Him. He already knows that but you need to know it, too.


18 In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

This is the toughest one, I think because we get so deep into our own stuff that we can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. Let’s face it, people are suffering. Financial troubles, health challenges, marital issues, or anything at all can drag us down. The unbelieving world would have you believe that all of the stuff happening to you is completely random and there is no purpose for your day to day life. But remember Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” This means that the tough job assignment your boss just gave you was not random. God has a purpose behind it. So, be thankful. As a matter of fact be thankful in all things. I had a friend who is a web developer who would frequently get angry at work when he would have to wait for some kind of web or database process to complete. He would wait wishing that it would run faster until he realized that even in these moments God had a purpose. His attitude was changed when he asked the Lord to help him understand what the Lord would have him learn from the situation and would be directed to solve another issue or do something else that had God’s touch behind it. So, we can be thankful even if we don’t quite understand why we are going through something.



19 Do not quench the Spirit.

Are you responding to what you feel God’s Spirit has put on your heart? Are you doing things you should not do? Are you not doing things that you should? If you responded “yes” to this then you may be in danger of quenching the Spirit. If you are a born again child of God then the Holy Spirit has set up in residence in you. Paul writes, “the Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Rom. 8:16). There are numerous passages in Scripture associating the Spirit with fire (Isa. 4:4; Matt. 3:11; Acts 2:23-4). The traits demonstrated by a person filled with the Holy Spirit are boldness, courage, and prophecy. These traits tend to be high energy or fiery acts. Certainly, Peter acted in the power of the Holy Spirit when he preached at the Temple in Jerusalem (Acts 2:14-36) and healed the crippled man (Acts 3:1-8). As Christians, we are called to live in the power of God’s Spirit by doing things that He has for us to accomplish. If a believer is not responding to the Holy Spirit by obeying what He wants him to do, then he can be in danger of quenching the Spirit. Are you called to preach? Teach? Or are you just called to reach out to the person down the street with some unique task that God wants you to help with? Do it somehow and live out the power of the Spirit.


20 Do not despise prophecies.

A lot of Christians, especially ones in mainline churches and even in mainline seminaries, tend to discount or not emphasize the many prophetic passages of the Bible. Specific types of prophecy that come to mind are passages having to do with the Lord’s Second Coming or the Rapture of the Church. For example, some preachers may say that we cannot understand the Book of Revelation because it is so hard to understand. Or they may advise you (regarding the Rapture or Second Coming) that since “of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven” (Matt. 24:36) we should not be expecting Christ’s return during our lifetime. But that is biblically incorrect since Paul himself exhorted the believers of his day to “say no to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope – the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:12-13). In short, understanding prophecy and applying it to our daily lives in a fashion that encourages us to live more holy is of great value.


21 Test all things; hold fast what is good.

This passage goes hand in hand with not despising prophecy. We should value prophecy: both what is written in the Bible and what a Spirit filled godly preacher declares from the pulpit. However, we need to test everything against the Holy Scriptures. We must make sure that whatever teaching we expose ourselves to, whether it comes from a Bible study teacher, a theology book, or a gifted evangelist, lines up with the Sacred Writ. The Christian faith holds to Sola Scriptura: that is that the biblical text is authoritative and “is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). Further, “the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12). Whatever teaching we place value on must be consistent with what is written in the New and Old Testaments.


22 Abstain from every form of evil.

This passage really speaks for itself. In view are basic moral laws taught in the Bible such as not stealing, not committing murder, not lying, not committing idolatry, and not coveting. The early direction of the disciples, and elders of the Church emphasized to the new Gentile believers that they “abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood” (Acts 15:29; 20:25). It is interesting that of these specific instructions given, the most applicable one is the warning against sexual immorality. How does one stay away from such things? James writes, “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your heart, you double-minded” (James 3:6-7). In essence, it is only by humbling ourselves before God and seeking His help that we can overcome our tendency to sin. If we humble ourselves and “confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:16). So, we know that “there is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit” (Rom. 8:1).

You Think but Do You Know for Sure?



GF Herrin


Unlike all other religions, the Christian faith leaves no doubt as to whether you are going to Heaven or not. The religions of Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and even Roman Catholicism hinge on doing good works to enter into Heaven.  Muslims believe that their good works are weighed against their bad works on the scales of Allah.  Roman Catholics believe that yes, Jesus had to die for their sins but they must be baptized, belong to a Roman Catholic church, hold to the working of the sacraments, and demonstrate good works as proof that they are saved to go to Heaven.

Any religion that is based on works or some combination of works and faith is in essence a dead end path. Biblical Christianity holds to a one-time event as the key activity that gets the believer to Heaven.  That event began with Justification – Jesus of Nazareth dying on the cross for mankind as a substitutionary atonement for sins. The second component of that event is repenting of sins and putting your faith in what Jesus did for you by taking the punishment that you deserve for your sins.

We talk to a lot of people who when asked if they think they are going to Heaven say, “I hope so, but don’t know for sure”. Let’s face it, life is way too short to not know for sure where you are going.  If your faith does not provide you certain knowledge of salvation, then, what good is it?

Merely believing that there is a God, is not enough, though. “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder” (James 2:19). Head knowledge is not sufficient. The natural order of God’s creation affirms that there is a creator, God.

The Bible provides a certain hope that salvation is found in no other being but the Messiah, Jesus.

Look at Acts 4:12 for example,

Paul writes, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

Once cannot merely believe in God. One must believe on Him, and on His Son, Jesus who died as the only means to provide your forgiveness for the sins that you have committed.

“And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”  So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:30-31).

This is a sure faith, not one that is in doubt. But it is not dependent on your good works or anything that you have done.  “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephes. 2:8-9).

All you must do is repent and believe.






Where there was Wretchedness now there is Righteousness



GF Herrin

If God, through His spirit, has called you to Him and you have repented from your sins, put your faith in Jesus Christ and been born again, then you are in essence a new man or woman.

Paul writes, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Cor. 5:17).

The Bible clearly says that when Jesus of Nazareth died as a substitutionary atonement for your sins He took the rap that you and I deserve.

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21).

What also needs to be stressed, too, is that while He viewed you previously as a fallen sinner separated from Him, now the God of the universe views you a person clothed with the righteousness of Christ.

No matter what your past or whether you were a Jew or Gentile, if you are a believer, Jesus, your Lord,  has given you His righteousness.  “that he might be the father of all those who believe, though they are uncircumcised, that righteousness might be imputed to them also” (Rom. 4:11). This word “imputed” means that you have been given Christ’s righteousness. Where previously you were dead in your sins and covered in the filthy rags of your sin and unrighteousness (Isa. 64:6), now, you are positionally clothed in the righteousness of Christ.  Where previously there was wretchedness, now there is righteousness!  That means that you can come to God , the Father, boldly in prayer and you are seen as clothed in Christ’s righteousness.

Indeed, since God is holy and righteousness, sin and unrighteousness are an abomination to Him. He cannot allow you into Heaven and into His presence if you are dead in your sins.  If you try to enter into the kingdom by any way except by Jesus’ sacrifice or your sins, you will not be accepted.

Jesus tells a Wedding banquet parable that illustrates this point.

So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.  But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment.  So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth’” (Matt. 22:10-13).

So, no giving of tithes, no perfect church attendance, no praying 5 times a day toward Mecca, speaking in tongues, or doing good works will make you acceptable to God.  Only by the shed blood of Jesus and being clothed in His Righteousness will get you there.








Eye on the End Times – September Signs



GF Herrin

A lot has already been written in regard to possible signs appearing in the skies in September of this year.

As Christians  we are called to be ready for the Lord’s return.  From an early age as a Christian I have watched expectantly for the Rapture and the Messiah, Jesus’ Coming.  In my teens, I was heavily influenced by Hal Lindsay’s writings.  Clearly, we are called to be watchmen and to long for His appearance.

The Lord Jesus said, “It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them” (Luke 12:37).

We may not know what the signs of September 23rd (Rosh Hashanah, the Feast of Trumpets) may portend.  Could it be the Rapture, the beginning of the 7 year Tribulation, or a coming war involving Israel? Or nothing at all? It is all speculative at this point.  But just as the Magi (Matt. 2:1-12), Simeon (Luke 2:25-32), and Anna (Luke 2:36-38) had information pointing to the Messiah’s first coming, it is reasonable to believe that there is information that we believers today may have to alert us to His soon return.

So, when I heard about the possible new way of looking at Revelation chapter 12, I was fascinated and excited.  There are various references that Christian brethren have on the internet that point to the signs in September as being a possible astronomical fulfillment of Revelation 12.


So, I would advise you to be discerning in pondering the meaning of these observations that many brethren have made. We are not to use stars, planets, the moon or sun to plan our day to day lives (that is Astrology). However, the Word does say that feasts (such as Rosh Hashanah and Passover) and signs in the heavens are indicators of Christ’s coming.  Please ask the Lord what these signs in the heavens mean and how you should prioritize your work for Him accordingly.


Revelation 12 Signs in the Heaven



Discover Ministries

“It would behoove the church to wake up! The bridegroom is coming soon!”




The Supernatural Power of Prayer


GF Herrin

Prayer is sometimes misunderstood in the Christian life. It is not merely a time to bring your requests to God. It is a time of communion with the Lord that enables the believer to connect with Him.  It is true that the Lord Jesus taught us how to pray when He gave us the Lord’s Prayer (Matt. 6:9-13).  But, true prayer that transforms the believer occurs when the sinner comes to a realization of his or her inadequacies and limitations and understands his total dependence on God in his life.

I had recently become overwhelmed by issues I was faced with in my day to day walk.  Job issues, family issues, and my ability to deal with them left me despondent and burdened. I was walking in my limited human strength instead of God’s strength.  But I finally came to a realization that I was not able to handle anything without His help.  The Lord brought to my mind some key texts in His word that put life in perspective for me.

If you feel overwhelmed and burdened by life’s struggles and feel that you alone must deal with your responsibilities, please remember that you are a created being whose existence is totally dependent on God’s creative work:

“And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being” (Gen. 2:7).

Remember that you did not start your life. God created you. In other words, you are a created being who is limited in your ability. You may feel that the world will spiral out of control if you don’t get your job, daily chores, errands, or other things that you deem important done today. But keep in mind, that unless the rapture occurs while you are alive, someday your life on earth will end and the world will go on without you.

Also, remember that you need to dedicate some time daily to ask for help and connect with the Lord. After all, even the Lord Jesus spent time praying daily putting the day’s events into the Father’s hands.

“Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed” (Mark 1:35).

Notice from Mark’s text that Jesus was alone. You need to be in some place where you are not distracted so that you can pray and hear the Lord’s voice in your heart or connect with Him spiritually in peace. Also, remember to confess any sins to the Lord.  Do not be afraid to bring your confession to the Lord Jesus because He is your advocate and high priest who is willing and able to forgive you.

“My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1).

“For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

 For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren” (Heb. 2:10-11).

So, when we come in prayer and turn away from our sins and turn to Jesus our burden is lightened.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matt. 11:28-30).


We become refreshed and the Holy Spirit invigorates us and gives us supernatural peace.

Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, (Acts 3:19).

“Create in me a clean heart, O God,  And renew a steadfast spirit within me.  Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, And uphold me by Your generous Spirit” (Psalm 51:10-12).

Time of refreshing come to our souls when we connect with the Lord in prayer. Like living water, the spirit fills us with His strength and supernaturally refreshes us and nourishes us, enabling to withstand the challenges of the day. Commune with the Lord today so that you can be filled with joy and live for Him.






Jesus’ Resurrection: Real Not Fake


GF Herrin

The certainty of Jesus’ Resurrection is paramount to the Christian faith. Recent skeptic/philosopher’s attempts to explain away the greatest miracle ever by saying the resurrection must have been a spiritual, existential,  or hallucinatory experience that the disciples all went through.

False scholars such as Rudolf Bultmann, who suggests that the resurrection of Christ was invented by His disciples or Bart Ehrmann,who casts doubts on the Gospel accounts, try to make people doubt the literalness of Jesus’ rising from the dead.

Some lines of thoughts from skeptics go this way:
It is highly improbable for a miracle to occur.
Since it is highly improbable that miracles occur, they probably do not.
Since miracles do not occur, the Resurrection of Christ did not occur either.

This line of thinking completely throws away the rare occurrences when miracles actually DO occur.
Since some skeptic theologians cannot believe in supernatural events, they must explain away the Resurrection as some kind of spiritual awakening or a hallucination that the disciples must have experienced.
However, we know from the written accounts of the New Testaments that Jesus’ resurrection was not a dream or apparition.  It was a physical, real resurrection in Christ’s glorified body.

Paul writes, “For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles” (1 Cor. 15:3-7).

The fact that 500 people saw Christ in His resurrected body at once dispels any possibility of the sighting being some kind of hallucination. After all, how could 500 people experience the same hallucination at the same time?

Luke attests to the fact that Christ, in His Resurrection was not a ghost or spirit, but was physically real.

“’Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.’ When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His feet. But while they still did not believe for joy, and marveled, He said to them, ‘Have you any food here?’So they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb. And He took it and ate in their presence”(Luke 24: -39 – 43).

Jesus could not have eaten food if He had only been a spirit\.  Therefore, He must have been physically resurrected.  The New Testament text shows Jesus’ Resurrection was real not fake. The 12 disciples and the others who saw Christ were unique in that they alone knew whether or not Christ had appeared to them after His death on the cross. That they were willing to die painful and horrible deaths for proclaiming the Resurrected Christ speaks to the truth of the event.  It was physical, and personal and it showed that His sacrifice for our sins was accepted by God the Father and we can take comfort in knowing we who believe in Him will be resurrected one day, too.


Convicted or Offended?


 by GF Herrin

    The more that I experience life and the more people that I talk to people about faith, the more I realize that there are two basic types of people in this world:  Those who become convicted and feel guilt for the sins that they have committed during their life journey, and those who are offended if you dare to suggest that they are sinners in need of redemption from God.  Whether it be a pedestrian who shouts, “I don’t want that “sh–”, when you try to hand him a Gospel tract or a young man in a Bus station who listens carefully when you kindly tell him the Gospel, the difference is clear.

The Bible illustrates this difference in types of people early on in the Scripture.  In Genesis chapter 4 we see the story of Cain and Abel (Gen. 4:3 – 13). Cain, because he could not accept God’s discontent with his offering of vegetables or fruit as a tribute to God, got angry at his brother, Abel, whose animal sacrifice was accepted as worthy. So, Cain, instead of swallowing his pride and changing his offering to please God, chose to murder Abel.  He was envious of Abel and got angry instead of changing his behavior to conform to God’s expectations.

Another illustration showing the difference in people comes to us in the parable that the Lord shares in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 18:9 – 14).  Here we see a Pharisee who considers himself righteous and justified by his works (he proudly fasts and pays offerings to the Temple).  He even considers himself better than a simple man who is a tax collector and is at the Temple at the same time as the Pharisee.  However, the tax collector is a man who humbles himself to God and (without even looking up to pray) confesses that he is a “sinner” and asks for mercy.  Jesus makes the point that this contrite man will obtain mercy and forgiveness from God.

The apostle Paul’s dramatic conversion story paints the ultimate illustration of a man who responded to God and saw his need to change and turn his life over to Him.  Paul, before he got saved on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:3-8), was a Jewish Pharisee who thought he was following God’s will by persecuting, arresting and executing Christians.  When the risen Christ appeared to him, Paul knew he was wrong and had been persecuting Jesus, the God of the Universe by hunting down His church.  He turned away from his sins, got baptized, and became the pre-eminent leader of the Evangelistic movement of the new church and took the Gospel message to the Gentiles.

The Bible is clear.  Many will be offended when told that they need to change their lives and turn themselves away from sin and ask God for forgiveness.  However, there are two types of people: those who are offended by the message to turn away from sin and turn their lives over to Jesus Christ and those who are convicted and feel guilty of their sins and accept Jesus’ offer for a new life that is glorious and adventurous.

Which kind of person are you?