July 1, 2014
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
Over the years I have received a number of e-mails from dentists who say that I, quite unfairly, have been picking on them. They assure me that if I have gone to a dentist who has given me more than a modicum of pain, I have been going to the wrong dentist.
They are quite right. I have picked on them and wish to go on record as saying, "I love my dentist." I especially love him when he says, "Great check-up, Pastor! I don't have to do anything. See you in 10 or 12 years."
All kidding aside, a visit to the dentist has always been a reasonable part of staying healthy. That being said, I still wish teeth could painlessly heal themselves from a cavity, even as our skin heals itself after a scratch. Of course, such a statement is met with the disappointing reply, "That's not going to happen! There is no way to put lost minerals back into a tooth's enamel."
According to researchers, that bit of wisdom may no longer be true. One spokesman from King's College, London, says a new method has been developed that allows a tiny, electric current to painlessly push those illusive minerals back into the tooth and let the chomper heal itself.
The process, which has been given the catchy title of "Electrically Accelerated and Enhanced Remineralization," may be available from your dentist within three years. Amazing!
So, let's see if we've got this right: our bodies heal themselves and our teeth may soon be able to do the same. Just about the only thing that isn't self-healing is the human soul.
Try as you will, a person cannot heal and restore his soul, which has been sickened by original and actual sin. Do all the good works you want; think all the happy thoughts you can; you will never be able to balance the scale or make yourself whiter than white for the Day of Judgment. Even the best and most well-behaved of sinners will someday find out that Romans 5 is absolutely correct when it states, "The wages of sin is death."
We would be in a most sorry situation and in an eternally saddened state if that verse ended with those words. But thanks be to God that thought does not stand alone. There is more, much more. Yes, the wages of sin is death, but forgiveness is made a reality through the gift of God that is ours through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
In grace God sent His Son to live for us, and in His grace Jesus carried our sins to the cross. In grace the Savior defeated death, and by grace the Holy Spirit brings sinners to salvation by giving them faith in the risen Redeemer.
And that, my friends, is good news. We know we cannot heal our souls, but the Lord can, and that is all the healing we will ever need.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, there was once a time when standing before You meant I would end up being consigned to the eternal fires of hell. Now, by Your grace, everything has been changed. May my life and language reflect the joy I have been given in the words, "By grace you have been saved through faith" (see Ephesians 2:8). In Jesus' Name, I ask it. Amen.
Lutheran Hour Ministries has always stood for bringing Christ to the Nations, but we also want to share the Savior with those who are close by. If you would like to know more about how you can be prepared to bear witness to the Savior, we are having an outreach conference called SENT, in Detroit, from July 24 - July 27. You can learn more at www.lhm.org/conference.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries