For when Gentiles, who do not have the Law, by nature do what the Law requires . . . They show that the work of the Law is written on their hearts . . . . Romans 2:14a, 15a
Although my beard has turned gray, I can still, on good days, remember back to when I was young. Sometimes I can even recall some of the mayhem and mischief I caused. Yup, there were moments I was a regular rapscallion.
Most of you have had those days, too, didn't you?
Last week, Adar Hassan told the BBC her son had been a little dickens. She said her boy, Abde, is only 16 years old; that he is innocent, that he is a minor, and that he isn't accountable for anything.
She has asked President Obama to let him go.
In case you missed the name, it was Abde. Abde, with an infected hand, was being treated on a Navy warship when snipers shot Abde's friends -- the three pirates who were holding hostage U.S. sea captain, Richard Phillips.
Now, I can understand a bit of tomfoolery, and I don't get bent out of shape when a young person gets involved with some monkey business. But the boy was a pirate. He boarded a ship that wasn't his; he kidnapped people at gunpoint; he wanted a ransom. Maybe he was a young pirate, a novice pirate, but he was still a pirate.
It makes a person wonder when will humanity stop making excuses? Adam excuses himself by blaming Eve; Eve excused herself by blaming the snake. Pass the buck, pass the blame, pass the responsibility.
Well, the Lord doesn't buy our excuses or the feigned innocent look on our faces. Scripture is clear: even if you don't have a Bible, you still have the Lord's Law in your heart. With the wages of sin being death, we were all doomed and damned.
Seeing our helpless state and wishing to save us, the Lord sent His Son to live His life, to give His life as the penalty price, which alone would win our forgiveness and assure our salvation.
Now, all who are brought to faith in Jesus, who confess their sins, find themselves forgiven and pardoned not by a president, but by their just Judge in heaven.
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, without excuse I confess my sin and ask forgiveness. May I, with faith in the Savior, live my life as a witness to His blood-bought pardon. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries