Sunday, February 9, 2020

God Doesn't Use Goody Goody People (Because None of Us Are): Trump, Zaccheus, Kanye

I have been learning so much about the gift of righteousness that we receive from Christ Jesus because of everything that He did for us at the Cross, and everything that He continues to do for us as He is seated at the Father's right hand.

It's amazing how often we can look at the failures in other people's lives, or the failures that people have made of their lives, and then wonder why God would use this person or that person.

Case in point, I have heard so many people complain about Donald Trump as our President because of his disorderly past private life. They see him as a great sinner who has no business representing anyone. They are further shocked that evangelical voters in particular and Christian, Jewish, other religious voters in general supported him, too.

Yes, he had affairs, cheated on his wife.

Yes, he said unkind things about other women (and men, too!)

Yes, he said uncouth things in private.

But let's be honest here. If we are transparent about our inner or thought life, none of us are any better.

The only difference between outlandish sinners like Donald Trump and the rest of us is that many of us keep our ungodly thoughts and feelings to ourselves and do not act on them. We don't hold back because we are good. We hold back because we fear what other people will think of us, or we fear criminal sanction. That's not true holiness, though.

Consider Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, in which He restored the perfection and inevitable condemnation of the law:

"21Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: 22But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire." (Matthew 5:21-22)

and then

"27Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: 28But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." (Matthew 5:27-28)

So there yo have it. Guess what? Sin is sin, whether inside or outside. If we are honest, all of us are--and for those who believe on Jesus, were--great sinners. We all need a Savior.

God did not send His Son to goody goody people, because if we are really honest, none of us are "goody goody". Besides, "goody goody" people don't need saving, do they?

And there's more! Our sin doesn't stop God's Son from coming to us, ministering to us, serving us, and working through us. Consider how Jesus honored and blessed Zaccheus, the thieving, tax-collecting sellout (cf. Luke 19:1-10). Salvation indeed came to Zaccheus' home, and from that point on the greedy tax collector became the most generous man in touch, giving half his wealth to the poor, plus a pledge to repay fourfold anyone whom he had cheated.

In a similar vein, see how God took a vain, philandering real estate broker and turned him into a patriot, freedom fighter, and defender of the Faith, in charge of the greatest country in the world!

When we just come to Him, without pretense, without arrogance, without self-righteousness, He can bless us and address all our needs and failings. That perfectly describes how God is using Donald J. Trump, too. It's God's great sense of humor that He has lavished such grace on our President, and this promotion of honor and glory so frustrates, to humiliates, so infuriates the secular and religious Pharisees of our time.

Consider what Kanye West declared after coming out as a Trump Supporter: "Ever since Trump won, I knew I could be President." And now Kanye is preaching the Gospel!

And guess what? So is President Donald Trump!

It's amazing what the LORD can do through any of us when we get rid of our self-righteous pretenses or our self-efforts to be "goody goody", and instead just let God be good to us and through us!

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