Summary: This sermon looks at the value of human life.
I Am Not An Accident
In Rick Warren’s book “The Purpose Driven Life” – he makes a profound statement. He says,
“You are not an accident. … Your birth was no mistake or mishap, and your life is no fluke of nature. Your parents may not have planned you, but God did. He was not at all surprised by your birth. In fact, he expected it.”
In our Scripture reading for today – Jeremiah learns this fact first hand when he hears God say:
"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." Jeremiah 1:5 (NKJV)
Now most of us may not be prophets – but I think that the first part of this verse applies to all of us. God says, "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” He goes on to say: “Before you were born I sanctified you.” He has set us apart – He has made us special. You are not an accident.
The voice of God comes to announce our extraordinary worth. This worth is inseparably linked to the fact that we were made by God and for God. Our worth to God started before we were born. We have invaluable worth because we were born in the mind of God – even before we entered our mother’s womb. We were valuable to God before the world began — because we were already on His mind and in His imagination. This fact is something that can never change or ever be taken away from us. It is the something we can never lose.
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works.” Psalms 139:14 (NKJV)
God prescribed every single detail of my creation. He deliberately chose my race, my gender, the color of my hair, the color of my skin, the color of my eyes – but guess what – He has done the same for you. You see – I am not an accident – and neither are you.
Can you imagine what Jeremiah must have felt when he heard God say: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." (Jeremiah 1:5)
Here at this moment Jeremiah hears the voice of God – the Creator of the Universe – He who put the stars in place – He who formed the world and all that we know – from the telescopic to the microscopic – and God speaks to Jeremiah and says: “Jeremiah – you are special. You have been on my mind a long, long, long time.”
How would you feel?
I think that I would echo the words of Psalm eight:
“What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him?” Psalms 8:4 (NKJV)
In other words – how important are we – that God should even pay attention to us? Yet He does! He says we are very important.
The theme of our value before God can be found throughout the Bible.
In Ephesians chapter two Paul is writing to the church at Ephesus and says:
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10 (NKJV)
Christians – this verse says – we are God’s workmanship – created in Christ Jesus – for the purpose of performing good works – which God prepared for us from the foundation world. Not only has God created each and every one of us unique – He has a purpose for our lives. I am not an accident – I have infinite value – because of who I am in Christ.
Jesus taught on our value when He spoke three parables in the fifteenth chapter of Luke. In the fifteenth chapter of Luke Jesus spoke about a lost sheep – a lost coin –– and a lost son. Allow me to tell you those stories now. Jesus said:
THE LOST SHEEP
"Suppose one of you had a hundred sheep and lost one. Wouldn’t you leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the lost one until you found it? When found, you can be sure you would put it across your shoulders, rejoicing, and when you got home call in your friends and neighbors, saying, ’Celebrate with me! I’ve found my lost sheep!’ Count on it—there’s more joy in heaven over one sinner’s rescued life than over ninety-nine good people in no need of rescue.” Luke 15:4-7 (MSG)
THE LOST COIN
Jesus went on to say:
"Or imagine a woman who has ten coins and loses one. Won’t she light a lamp and scour the house, looking in every nook and cranny until she finds it? And when she finds it you can be sure she’ll call her friends and neighbors: ’Celebrate with me! I found my lost coin!’ Count on it—that’s the kind of party God’s angels throw every time one lost soul turns to God." Luke 15:8-10 (MSG)