“Once there was this man who had two sons. One day the younger son came to his father and said, ‘Father, eventually I’m going to inherit my share of your estate. Rather than waiting until you die, I want you to give me my share now.’ And so the father liquidated assets and divided them” (Luke 15:11-12 Voice).
“Hey dad, I can’t wait for you to die because it’s taking too long. Just disperse my inheritance now. Let’s pretend that you’re already dead.” How rude, insensitive and unkind!
When we enjoy life but want nothing to do with the Lifegiver, we’re essentially saying, “God, I love what you create, but I wish You were out of the picture. I’m not going to recognize Your claim on my life. It’s my life and I’ll do as I please.”
Like the prodigal, we may leave God’s presence and travel to a “far country,” only in a different way. Without leaving home, we may leave Him in our hearts. For instance, we can be in a church pew yet in a “far country” spiritually. We don’t have to be “anti-God” or atheist to cut God out of the picture. We can do it by just ignoring Him, or relegating Him to the “back burner” of our day-to-day lives. When we do so we are saying, “God, I wish you were dead.”
From the day Lucifer became Satan, God has had enemies. When Jesus came as an infant in Bethlehem, Herod wanted Him dead! The Pharisees and Scribes wanted Him dead. The rabble crowd who clamored for His crucifixion wanted Him dead!
Today, many professed “Christians, through their words and actions, show they want Jesus dead. They don’t want to embrace His ideals as outlined in the “Golden Rule” (Matthew 7:12), or the “Sermon on the Mount.” They want a facade of religious appearance without the substance. Salvation without a price! Cheap grace!
Redemption is expensive, especially for God who paid the ultimate price. The price we pay to embrace God’s ideals seems paltry and puny! But it is a price. It is to give up our way, our demands, and our misguided wisdom.
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Rich DuBose writes from Northern California.