SIN’S REWARDS Numbers 32: 23-24

I can still hear her warnings.  My mother scares me with these–‘God’s going to get you’.  ‘Be sure your sins will find you out.’  I was a nice little boy.  A polio victim needing extra TLC!  Maybe not.  I guess I stepped over the line.  Did what I shouldn’t have.  Those words come flying at me and hit their target’s bullseye.

My mother was not a particularly religious person.  Rarely attends church as an adult.  Been to Sunday School and Christian Endeavor youth programs, but with seeming little lasting effect.  Except when needed in her arsenal of discipline with her youngest!

Doubt my mother knows she’s quoting from the Old Testament book of Numbers–‘…and you may be sure that your sin will find you out’ (Numbers 32:23).  The only Bible verse she memorizes for Christian Endeavor is ‘Jesus wept’ (John 11:35).  She’s probably not alone!

Numbers 32 is not an easy read.  Not to modern ears and eyes.  War never is.  The people of ancient Israel have battles ahead, great and fearsome ones, to gain God’s Promised Land.  Read the book of Numbers.  It’ll be in your face.  Hard to take.  Harder to fathom the sacrifices required.

Back to my mother’s warning about sin finding me out, catching me red-handed and flatfooted.  Sin doesn’t pay.  Calls us out.  Does us in.  Wreaks havoc in more ways than one.  Then spills over, corrupting future generations.  Its insidious ways poison so much and so many.  Sin will find us out.  My mother’s right.

The remedy?  Too simple for most.  For believers, its simplicity is overshadowed by the enormity of Jesus’ love and sacrifice.  Almost unimaginable yet true and trustworthy.  All our sin exposed and laid on our Savior’s shoulders.  He then takes them and tosses them far, far away.  A threat no longer.

Could forgiveness and salvation be mere pie in the sky?  Hardly.  In reality it’s the real McCoy.  On the up and up and twenty-four carat gold.  All because of Jesus.  His gifts… never earned by us.  That’s our Savior’s rewards!

 

Thank you, Jesus, for everything.  Amen.

 

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