Summary: We all like these pictures that show what we were like and what we are now, well sometimes we do. This before and after picture is one we should like and appreciate what God has done for us.
Before and After
Having laid the foundation of our life in Christ and living through his resurrection power, Paul expounds on the theme of salvation by reviewing the merciful means that God uses to bring us in to His Family.
What is mercy? Micah 7:19 tells us MIC 7:19 You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea. Mercy is seeing with the eyes of another, feeling with their feelings. It is total identification with another. We are alive because God is merciful.
It is our misery that calls for God’s mercy. As any parent knows, when a child is suffering from a severe cold, sore throat and all that comes with that, when all that child can do is cling to us and cry, it awakens in us a sense of pity, we do whatever we can to relieve that child’s misery. Why? Because his misery has called forth our mercy.
1. Dead in our sins (v1)
2. Spiritually Starving (v3)
a. People do not eat the sand because they are starving, they eat it because they do not know any better (unknown)
b. When we take/eat what the world is serving we are eating pig slop, and we do not know any better. (prodigal son)
c. We are looking for love in all the wrong place (woman taken in adultery)
d. Wanting acceptance at any cost (woman at the well)
3. Under a tough taskmaster (v2)
a. Slave to sin
b. Follow anything
4. Objects of wrath (v3)
a. We deserve death
b. We deserve to be wiped out like those in the days of Noah
c. We are unclean, separated (v 11,12)
A mother went to the Emperor Napoleon to try gain a pardon for her son. The Emperor said it was his second offense and he deserved death. “I don’t want justice, I plead for mercy” the mother said. The Emperor replied “he does not deserve mercy.” Sir, the mother cried, it would not be mercy if he deserved it, and mercy is all I ask. The Emperor said I will show mercy, and her son was saved.
Long spoon. Those in Hell were greedy and did not feed each other, looked out only for themselves, those in Heaven were well fed because they learned to help each other.
We need to look out for each other, not because they deserve it per se, but because they like us have come under the same mercy.
God through His Mercy has;
1. Raised us from the dead (spiritually) v 5,6
2. The two were made one (marriage talk) v14
3. We are New (v15.16)
4. We have become Citizens of a new land (19)
Why did God do all this? Because of His infinite Mercy, our situation touched his heart and because he loves us so, he reached out with his tender mercy and saved us.
Illust: Shirley Goodness and Marcy.
WE have spiritual bodyguards, they will escort us all the days of our lives.