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The Gospel in the brokenness

This week as we participate in Ash Wednesday and begin to think ahead to the cross I want to really dial in on how the gospel message, the good news of Jesus sets us free. It sets us free from the hurt, the loneliness, the brokenness, the sin, and the ashes that we are living with and carrying around every day. Every single one of us has dealt with pain. We have dealt with hurt. I am not here to tell you that it doesn’t matter. I’m telling you that it does matter.

Because when we look around and we know that something is broken. Right? I mean we feel it. It doesn’t have to be pointed out to us; we know that this is broken. We can open up our web browser, or check our Facebook feed, and we can see that absolute brokenness of the world. We see it in our friends; we see it in our families. We see it in the people we admire the most; we see it in ourselves that something is broken. We feel it. We can feel it. No matter where we try to find comfort, no matter where we try to find joy, it can never be enough. And then we just move on to the next thing. And we do this because of the brokenness that we feel. We are always searching for the thing that will fill that void in our life, the things that will numb the pain, the thing that will we think will comfort us. But we come up empty. And what we do is we enslave ourselves to every little thing that brings us a little bit of peace or comfort or love and in the end find ourselves still wanting. The enemy of this world, the enemy of Gods people, Satan, grabs hold of each and every one of those things. We have conditioned ourselves here in the western world to think that we are too smart to believe that there is an enemy out there, a spiritual darkness out there that wants to derail us, and in doing so we have given him a foothold that is difficult to break. The truth is satan is very real, and he’s not some guy in a red suit with a pitchfork and pointy tail, but rather he is the enemy of God’s people whose very being is meant to destroy you. He works through the lies that we have bought into, through the lies that we have been sold. Through the hurt and pain. Through the doubt.

But to understand this, we have to go back to the beginning. We have to see the story of God, the story of us, as the beautiful narrative that it is. See the bible isn’t a bunch of random stories cobbled together and sold as a book of morality tales. I know some of us have been brought up to believe that, and maybe you believe that being a Christian is about a list of do’s and don’ts but I am here to tell you it’s so much more. The bible is the story of God. It’s the story of the gospel, the good news of Jesus and who he is, and what he’s done. The gospel is about the glory of God. It's a story of God’s redemption in saving sinful unworthy people. It’s a story that starts before us. It’s a story that begins before the world did. God creates us, mankind in the garden, in perfect fellowship with him, unstained by rebellion, brokenness sin. And the fall enters into God’s creation and god does something unexpected. Rather than doing what he should do, could do, because he’s holy, God promises to save. He doesn’t come in and simply bring the curse, but he promises first the messiah; the messiah who will come in through this work and crush then enemy. It’s the story of God’s grace flowing through history, recorded in scripture. Long before Jesus ever walked on the earth in his earthly ministry, God gave us every detail we would need about the messiah. This story is Gods coming to save sinful man. Isaiah 9:6-7 a child is coming, he will be called wonderful counselor, the mighty God. The bible tells us about his life and ministry Isaiah 53 he would be wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities, the chastisement for our peace will be upon him and by his wounds we will be healed. He will be pierced for our transgression, he will be numbered among the transgressors, he would be the one who justifies the many as he bears our iniquities, and counted among the rebels. But that’s not all the bible tells us, that this messiah is coming to bring salvation and forgiveness, that he would redeem us from our sins, and he will actually be bring his kingdom, his rule in history. His kingdom is one that will never be destroyed, that he would bring the knowledge of God throughout the earth like the sea. That this messiah will bring victory and that he will bring salvation through his death and resurrection, and his rule will extend to the ends of the earth. And that’s where we are at now. The good news of forgiveness and salvation and eternal life only in Christ and what he has accomplished despite the fact that we are broken, we are sinners, we are wretched, that if we had it our way we would reject the very God that created us, that is our condition. But God loves sinners so much that he took upon himself flesh, lived a sinless life that we cannot, died the death that we should die, was buried and rose again, he has ascended and seated and calls men everywhere to repent, to turn from darkness, to light, to God and trust this messiah for forgiveness and salvation. It’s the gospel of the kingdom, God rescuing sinners. Redeeming the sinful, the broken, and the ash covered, reversing what happened in the garden destroying the curse as far as it ids found. God taking what man did in the world and reversing it to his glory. That’s the story of the gospel. Trusting in Christ and his work alone and seeking Christ for redemption. Turn and believe; that’s the call of the gospel. It’s the good news for sinners and for the broken. Jesus says truly those who hear my voice and believes him who sent me has eternal life and does not come into judgment but has new life. That is the good news. That is the Gospel.

· The first Adam turned from the Father in a garden; the last Adam turned to the Father in a garden.

· The first Adam was naked and unashamed; the last Adam was naked and bore our shame.

· The first Adam’s sin brought us thorns; the last Adam wore a crown of thorns.

· The first Adam substituted himself for God; the last Adam was God substituting himself for sinners.

· The first Adam sinned at a tree; the last Adam bore our sin on a tree.

· The first Adam died as a sinner; the last Adam died for sinners.


- Drew Hood


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