In 1992, Dennis Lee Curtis was arrested for armed robbery in
In his wallet, police found a list of rules Curtis had written for himself
-guidelines for his robberies. For example, he wrote: * “I will not kill anyone unless I have to.” * “I will take cash and food stamps - no checks.” * “I will not rob mini-marts.” * “If I get chased by cops on foot, I
will get away. If chased by vehicle, I will not put the lives of innocent
civilians on the line.” * “I will
rob only seven months out of the year.” *
“I will enjoy robbing from the rich to give to the poor.” This may seem odd,
but Dennis Lee Curtis was a thief with some standards. But when he stood before
the court, the judge did not consult Curtis’ list of rules. He pulled out the
laws of the state by which to judge him, by which to convict him. In the same
way, when we stand before God, He won’t consult man-made rules and standards.
He will judge us by His unchanging Word, the Bible. Rapid
City, South Dakota
Think about a boat on the river with no one in it just going with the flow; side to side, bank to bank, and not knowing where its journey will end. It could end up stuck next to the bank with branches all around it and not able to move any farther. It could end up at a waterfall, going over, and being broken into pieces. Without someone guiding the boat it has no hope. That is how we are without God: no hope, no direction, just walking around, just like that boat that no one is guiding. Jesus came to guide us and to save the lost (Luke19:10). God loves us and he doesn’t want us to be like that boat (John 3:16). Jesus is coming back; “...I am going there to prepare a place for you. ...I will come back and take you to be with me” (John 14:1-6); and he wants us all to be saved. We need to be going in the right direction, toward heaven, because tomorrow might just be too late.
[Psalm 16:11] “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” Don’t let the devil get you caught up in the world. The devil is like a roaring lion that walks about seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). Don’t be in that boat that no one is guiding and go over the falls. Jesus said, “There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day” (John 12:48). Observe: by God’s standards we are ALL guilty of sin. “As it is written: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one’ …for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:10, 23). But the GOOD NEWS is that God is not only willing to forgive us, He has made a costly Provision for our salvation from sin. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). On the cross, Jesus, the Son of God, paid the price for our redemption from sin. “He is the atoning sacrifice (propitiation) for our sins, and not for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2). Those who accept His offer of salvation through obedience, will receive the forgiveness of sins and the gift of eternal life; “In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he has lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding” (Ephesians 1:7); “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Let’s be sure to live by God’s standards, not our own. For God’s Word is THE standard of judgment. Let Jesus be your guide! “Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior...” (Psalm 25:5)