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Archive for April, 2011

“Why would you save me?”

Several weeks ago on American Idol, Casey Abrams, who is a favorite among the judges (and also my personal fav), was eliminated before he made it to the top ten. The procedure for those who receive the least number of votes that week is to sing one last time before the judges, hoping that they will use their “save” to keep the contestant on the show. However, in this round, no one expects the judges to use the save. It’s just too early in the show. But as Casey began to sing the judges immediately said, “Stop! We don’t need to hear you sing. We know who you are and have decided to use the save.” Casey almost, well, he did fall down. You see, the stunned singer, with a dazed look eventually said in utter disbelief, “Whe would you [save] me? I can’t believe it.” That is a great question for every Christian to ask. Why would God save me? The answer is found in Ephesians 2, where Paul says, “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).” He saved us not because of our spiritual lovliness or moral obedience (after all, we were dead in our sins), but because of his mega-love. His perfect, eternal, adopting affection that went to the cross to reclaim the rebellious children so that we might glorify him for the overflow of his undeserved but lavishing agape-love. Why me? It’s not because of me. It is because of God. He loves us, well, because He loves us. The irony in this is that Casey Abrams does deserve to continue to be on American Idol because he is an awesome singer and artist. However, as Clint Eastwood says, “Deserves got nothing to do with it.” We don’t deserve God’s grace, but He gives it to us anyway. If we did deserve it, then it wouldn’t be grace. As Steve Brown would say, “You think about that.” Maybe we, like Casey, will find ourselves falling down… on our knees… in worship.

I liked Casey Abrams the first time he was on the show during the auditions. I used this clip in a sermon to make the point that Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount says, “You thought the Old Testament Law meant this (that you were supposed to try to live a life of moral performance to attain the acceptance and favor of God) and I am saying it means this (that you need a righteousness that supersedes that of the Pharisees, a righteousness that comes through faith in Christ alone) .”

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