November 6, 2013
In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace. Ephesians 1:7
A few weeks ago I found out I was in debt. Big time.
The actual figure back then was $53,765. Sadly, the price of my debt hasn't diminished since I made my discovery. Now I do know some folks who could write a check for that amount and not blink an eye, but I and most of you are not in that category. We are in the group that says, "Fifty-three thousand, seven hundred and sixty-five dollars! Are you kidding? There's no way I can pay off a debt that big!"
Now I only share this personal information with you because your debt is the same as mine.
That's right. If you take the $17 trillion national debt and divide it by the number of people in the United States you will find each of us owes almost $54,000.
That's bad news. Want news which is worse? That $54,000 is miniscule, microscopic, compared to the debt we sinners owe to our Lord. We were born debtors and throughout our lives every time we have thought, done or said something wrong, we have added to that debt.
Worst of all, because of our sinful natures, we don't have the ability to pay back the first penny of that debt.
It is a situation which is not pleasing to the Lord. You see, our perfect God keeps an incredibly accurate set of books. He who knows the hairs on our head is equally aware of all our wrongdoing. He knows all of us have run up a bill which was destined to destroy us.
Note the past tense of that verb: was destined to destroy us.
The Lord, in an act of unmerited and unprecedented grace, has done for us something no earthly banker would or could do: He sent His Son into this world to take our place under the Law and pay the debt we had accumulated.
To pay that debt Jesus was born. To pay that debt He resisted temptation and on the cross He died the death our debts had earned. With His resurrection from the dead we have proof that God has accepted His Son's sacrifice and our debts are forever paid.
This means that we, as citizens of God's kingdom of grace, can be at peace. In Jesus we have the forgiveness of our sins ... which are the riches of His grace.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I cannot begin to understand or thank You for sending Your Son into this world to pay the debt that has been run up by my sin. All I can do is say, "Thank You" for my Savior who gave Himself, so I might be debt free. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries