March 19, 2013
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2
The news reports coming out of Tehran sound like something from a bad science fiction movie.
Those reports talk about "giant rats," which are the product of a "genetic mutation" stemming from exposure to "radiations and the chemicals used on them." Ismail Kahran, the environmental adviser for Tehran's city council, says the rats look different and can now weigh up to 11 pounds.
Sadly, truth is stranger than fiction. The facts are these:
* It is estimated that Tehran has 2.5 million rats, some of which are bigger than a cat.
* Those rats have been flushed out of their nests by melting snow.
* To reduce the rat population, Tehran's city fathers have ordered 45 tons of rat poison, poison to which many of the rats may have developed a resistance.
* To supplement the rat extermination program, the city has hired snipers and given them rifles with night-vision scopes.
Here is one other fact: Tehran is helpless in a hopeless situation. No matter what they do they know they will never eradicate the rats.
It was that last line that got me to thinking.
It occurred to me that humanity is in much the same boat. No, we don't have an insurmountable plague of rats, but we are beset by overwhelming sin. No matter what we do, no matter how hard we try, no matter how sincere might be our intentions, we cannot win the battle. We are helpless to divest ourselves of sin.
This is precisely why we need a Savior -- why we need Jesus.
Looking at our helpless, hopeless condition the Lord above had mercy upon us and sent His Son into this world to take our place. Having defeated Satan's temptations and having lived a perfect life, Jesus swept up all of our sins and carried them to the cross.
There, when He died, so did our sin. Now, by God's grace, all who are given faith in the risen Redeemer are blessed to find the pestilence of sin has disappeared, and we can live our lives in peace and without fear.
Jesus is humankind's special, singular Benefactor because He has rescued us from the plague of sin, which once beset and condemned us.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks that Jesus has done what I could not and defeated the plague of sin. May my life reflect my gratitude in all I say and do. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries