Summary: Often we wait for the world to change, to get better, but God didn’t wait. Through the death and resurrection of Jesus he changed the world for us.
(Play Song “Waiting on the World to Change” by John Mayer)
Introduction: That song is currently quite popular, and while I like John Mayer’s music I must say that this is one of the worst songs I’ve ever heard in my life. Musically it’s great but the lyrics offer no hope, no promise, no willingness to take responsibility or be a part of the solution for the troubles we experience today. Look at the lyric of this song and you’ll see what I mean.
[Read Lyrics to “Waiting on the World to Change” by John Mayer]
Unfortunately the lyrics to this song represent a prevailing attitude for many people. Many of us recognize that the world is broken, but we keep waiting for the world to change. We keep waiting for the world to get better. We’d like to get involved but there are too many problems, too much pain, too many obstacles and so we choose to abdicate our power, we choose to walk away from our responsibilities and wait for the world to change. Someday we’ll get our chance to be a part of the solution, but for today we’re waiting for the world to change.
We verbalize this attitude when we say things like…
• When things settle down, I’ll…
• When I can afford it, I’ll…
• When the situation improves, we can…
We’ve all been guilty of waiting for the world to change. We’ve all be guilty of waiting for a more opportune time to get involved. I’m not pointing a finger at the church or at our community and saying “you’ve messed it up, now fix it!” I’m pointing a finger at me and recognizing that I have failed to act at times when I could have and should have.
Now, before I get any further off track, let me tell you that this sermon isn’t about whether you or I have been change agents in our world. We need to be and there is change that we can affect, but that’s not my focus today. Rather than point out what we haven’t done, I want to deliver some good news. No! I want to deliver some great news!
It’s true that we have a tendency to procrastinate. We humans have a tendency to sit and wait for the world to change…but here’s the great news.
GOD DIDN’T WAIT!...GOD DIDN’T WAIT!
GOD DIDN’T WAIT.
While the world was still a mess, lost in complete selfishness and rebellion, sin prevailing, God chose to step in and do something about the problem. In fact, God had a plan to solve the problem of this world from the beginning.
With God, there was no waiting for the world to change. God chose to step in and actively change the world for each and every one of us.
God, at just the right time, stepped in and did more than just change the world, he radically transformed it.
But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.
Galatians 4:4 (NLT)
When the time was just right God chose to step in and free us and adopt us as his own children.
Stop for just a minute and think about that. GOD, the GOD OF THE UNIVERSE, the GREAT I AM, interrupted history and sent His Son so that He could ADOPT US! That’s a radical transformation and God didn’t wait for the world to change so he could adopt us…he stepped in and changed the world specifically so he could adopt us.
And not only did he not wait for the WORLD to change, but he doesn’t wait for US to change. Still to this day he is in the business of bringing change and he doesn’t wait for us to do the changing. He doesn’t wait for us to get it right and finally live up to his Holy standards. Rather, he offers to change us before we realize or acknowledge that we need to change.
He offers to make us new and to change us…to spiritually heal us…before we even realize we’re broken. The Bible tells s that God demonstrated that amazing love for us by giving us hope for life, by providing the means for us to change, before we knew of our need.
In Romans 5 we read.
God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8 (NIV)
Through the death and resurrection of Jesus the world changed. And it required both his death AND resurrection. Without his resurrection he was just another great teacher and religious revolutionary. Without his resurrection he is a man who taught great things but then died and was buried. But the resurrection changes everything. The resurrection changes the world. The resurrection means that he is alive and is still active in the work of grace and mercy that he began on the cross.