Summary: LIFE ENCOUNTER IS - ➊ RARE - Spared Not ➋ COSTLY - Delivered Him Up ➌ OBTAINABLE - Give Us

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Rom. 8:32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

Either television writers have finally run out of ideas for bad situation comedies or the baby boomers’ nostalgic longing for their 60s youth is simply in control of the airwaves. Whatever. In our retro-chic craziness, there is now a resurgence of some of the corniest 1960s programming.

One of the biggest new/old hits is that silly spy-spoof, "Get Smart." Perhaps no other show except "Laugh-In" coined so many catch phrases that worked their way into 60s conversations.

> "Sorry about that, Chief"

> ".... And loving it"

> "Missed it by that much ... "

> And most famously, "Would you believe ...?"

In the TV show, secret agent Maxwell Smart would inevitably come up against some brick wall of a bad guy from whom he had to escape. Smart would try to intimidate his foe by scaring him off with some hopelessly transparent exaggeration: "Right now, there are 50 armed police officers surrounding this place." When the adversary doubted him, Smart would counter with: "Would you believe 20 police and an angry dog?" With the crook still not impressed, Smart would finally suggest: "How about a troop of Girl Scouts on a cookie-sale drive?"

How many of us are willing to put what we believe on a similar sliding scale? When we were young in years or young in faith, we were able to believe almost anything we were told. Our parents, our teachers and our pastors were unimpeachable sources of truth and integrity. If any one of them said something, it must be true.

But when we grew older in years and more "sophisticated" in thoughts, we learned to stop believing things simply because an authority figure told us it was true. Our own intelligence, skepticism and curiosity forced us to go out and make inquiries for ourselves. While this process results in the gradual development of a healthy, well-informed, personalized faith, for too many others, the entire concept of "believing" can eventually erode completely away.

What is it to which you can stand up and boldly say "I believe"? The Bible is full of the most extravagant promises, the most expansive gifts. Do you read those texts and nod, asserting that "I do believe this"?

■ Would you believe ... the Bible says

> You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you? (Philippians 4:13)

> You can do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that you can ask or think? — Eph 3:20

> To as many as received him, to them he gave power, even to become the sons of God? – Jn 1:12

> That God freely gives us all things - Rom. 8:32

Three Key Phases in Rom 8:32

➔ Spared Not

➔ Delivered Him Up

➔ Give Us

➊ RARE - Spared Not

> Spare: To save and refrain from harming

- The rare and extremely valuable we guard and protect

- Children

Genesis 42:3-4 KJV

3 And Joseph’s ten brethren went down to buy corn in Egypt. 4 But Benjamin, Joseph’s brother, Jacob sent not with his brethren; for he said, Lest peradventure mischief befall him.

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