Summary: Jesus paid the price for your sins.
America has become a nation of debtors. Our government’s national budget deficit is approximately five trillion dollars. Credit card offers flood the mail boxes and television screens of the American people. Most people find it impossible to own a house or a car without taking out a loan. Nearly one million people will file personal bankruptcy this year because of their inability to pay back their debts.
I realize the topic is personal, but I need to talk to you about being overdrawn. (I know that has never happen to you all before).
Let’s just say your paycheck was late, and your landlord cashed your check to quickly.
You were going to make a deposit, but on your way out the door the phone ring, and it was your aunt from Minnesota and by the time you got to the bank to make your deposit it was closed and you didn’t know how to make a night deposit.
But regardless of the reason, the result is the same: INSUFFICIENT FUNDS. That phrase if not only famous at the bank, but it hangs the same hallways as:
I need new car, but I have to wait awhile - INSUFFICIENT FUNDS.
My tooth hurts bad, a root canal is necessary, but I have to wait a little while longer - INSUFFICIENT FUNDS.
Look girl, let’s stop dating, let’s just be friends - INSUFFICIENT FUNDS.
You are overdrawn. You gave more than you had to give. You spent more than you had to spend. And guess who has to cough up some cash?
Not the bank; they didn’t write the check.
Not the store; they didn’t make the purchase.
Not your Aunt in Minnesota; unless she’s got a soft spot in her heart for you.
In the grand scheme of things, you can make all the excuses you want, but a bounced check lands in the lap of the one who wrote it.
What do you do if you don’t have any money?
What do you do if you have nothing to deposit but an honest apology and good intentions?
You pray that some wealthy soul will make a huge deposit into you account.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if someone would tell us that our debts had all been canceled and present us with a perfect credit record?
If you’re talking about your financial debt, that’s not likely to happen. But if you’re talking about your spiritual debt, however, it already has.
See God your Father has covered all your short falls with his grace. He spared no expense. It cost him the life of his only begotten son.
Those three words in the middle of the Lord’s Prayer, “Forgive our Debts”
The Greek word for debt has no mystery. It simply means “to owe someone something.”
If to be in debt is to owe someone something, isn’t it appropriate for us to speak of debt in our prayer, for aren’t we all in debt to God?
Aren’t we in God’s debt when we disobey his commands?
He tells us to go south and we go north.
He tells us to turn right and we turn left.
He tells us to love our neighbor, we hurt our neighbor.
He tells us to seek his will, we seek our will.
He tells us to forgive our enemies, but we attack our enemies.
WE DISOBEY GOD!
Aren’t we in God’s debt when we disregard him?
He makes the universe, and we applaud science.
He heals the sick, and we applaud the medicine.
He gives us possessions, and we salute human ingenuity.
He grants beauty, and we credit Mother Nature.
WE DISREGARD GOD.
Aren’t we in God’s debt when we disrespect his children?
What if I did to you what we do to God?
What if I shouted at your child in your presence?
What if I called him names or struck him?
You wouldn’t tolerate it. But don’t we do the same?
How does God feel when we mistreat one of his children?
When we curse at his offspring?
When we criticize a co-worker?
When we gossip about a relative.
When we speak about someone before we speak to them?
We disrespect his children!
Wait a second, Kenny.
You mean every time I do one of these things, I’m writing a check on my heavenly bank account?
That’s exactly what I’m saying. I’m also saying that if Christ had not covered us with his grace, each of us would be overdrawn on that account.
A lot of folks think they can get into Heaven by doing good.
Which reminds me of a story about this active, dedicated, hard-working church member dreamed that he passed away after a long and satisfying life.
As he approached the Pearly Gates, he noticed a sign posted which read, "ENTRANCE REQUIREMENT: 1000 POINTS."