Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Needed or Need?

A few phrases from Jesus have been on my mind recently.
  • Those who are well do not need a physician. (Mark 2)
  • Joy in heaven doesn't occur over those who are so righteous that they don't have anything to repent of. (Luke 15)
  • Christ didn't come to call the righteous, but sinners. (Mark 2)
Often, I have thought that these things really speak to those who are in need of the experience of conversion. In that light, they are of great value to those who have never been rescue, those who have never been saved, those who never have been converted. However in recent days, I have come to realize they have something profound to say to those who already have been rescued, to those who have already been converted, to those who have already tasted of the life-changing work of the gospel.

These words help me realize that as a believer, I am in need of the gospel more than ever. I need a Savior, a rescuer, a healer, a substitute, a deliverer, a physician, a Father, a friend who will lay down their life for me. All of those things I need today!

What strikes me here is that if we look a little bit below the surface, we should realize something profound.
  • We are all sick spiritually. Not just in the past, but we are being made whole even today. Therefore, we are in need of a physician. So, Christ is here for the spiritually sick. I didn't just need His healing when I came to Him in faith, I need it today as I come to Him in faith.
  • We have much to repent of. Not just in the past, but even today we are growing in our joyful, obedience. We have much room to grow. However, as we repent of our sin, there is joy in heaven. So, the angels in heaven throw parties over the conversion of outsiders, but I think there is celebration over Christians who 'get it,' who come to Christ in repentance over post-conversion sin.
  • We are not righteous on our own. Therefore, we are in the category of people that Christ is calling. If I am righteous in and of myself (or think I am), Christ really has no purpose for me. I am my own Savior (what a scary thought). But, I would much rather join the person who cried out to Jesus, "Lord! Have mercy on me."
The point is that Jesus' message of good news isn't just something we needed (past tense), but something we need. Believers need the gospel!