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Christian Devotional by Pastor Cecil Thompson

Cecil Thompson

Isaiah 53:4-6

"Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”

In today’s Scripture, Isaiah is speaking of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As we read this 53rd chapter of Isaiah, we see the terrible condition of each one of us. Our sinful condition demands the payment of death. You will find no innocent people on planet earth.

An unknown author sets the stage in a courtroom outside of heaven. The scene is dramatic, but I feel it is theologically inaccurate, as is the case with many such stories. The story suggests that it is our actions or deeds that determine our entry into God's heaven. That is patently false since it is has already been determined when we are born again.

There are two judgments mentioned in Scripture; the Judgment Seat of Christ for believers, and the Great White Throne of judgment for unbelievers. I certainly want to be present at Judgment Seat of Christ, not at the Great White Throne judgment.

We are told in Revelation 12:10, that Satan is the accuser of the brethren (also the sisters). It speaks in the present tense--"He is the accuser." Right now, at this very moment, there is a constant barrage of lies being told to God the Father about each of us. There is too much truth about our sins of commission and omission, so you wonder why Satan would even need to resort to lies. Sorry, perhaps I am only speaking about myself.

I read, or heard one time about a native village in Africa, where someone ran through the village yelling as loud as possible; "They know!" "They know!" "They know!" Immediately, from all over the village, people rushed out and hid in the scrub brush surrounding the village. I guess that each one had a guilt that they felt had been exposed.

In the book of Job, we have a picture of the way Satan accuses and maligns those who love God. Job was a very righteous man, but he was accused by Satan of being righteous only because it was to his benefit. In other words, he was attacking the motives of the heart. What if Satan attacked the motives of your heart---would you be able to stand the testing?

But wait a minute! There is more to it than this. It is not our human righteousness that gives us a right standing with God. The Prophet Isaiah, writing a few chapters later, 64:6 says that "- -all our righteous acts are like filthy rags." Please do not think I am being gross, but I want you to know the exact meaning of his statement. His use of the term "filthy rags," refers to the cloths that a woman uses during her monthly period. AND THAT IS OUR RIGHTEOUS ACTS! Think how bad our rotten acts are in the sight of God! How in the world can we ever be justified?

Let me switch back to the story about the attorney representing us at the gates of Heaven. It is important that we always remember that Satan is our accuser. It is after Satan has accused the defendant before God the Father that our Defense Attorney rises:

Our Lawyer asks if he might approach the bench. The judge allows this over the strong objection of Satan, and beckons him to come forward. As he walks toward the bench, I am able to see Him in his full splendor and majesty. I realized why he seemed so familiar.

This is Jesus, my Lord and my Savior, who is representing me. He stops at the bench and softly says to the judge, "Hi Dad." He turns to address the court. "Satan was correct in saying that this man has sinned, I won't deny any of these allegations. And yes the wages of sin is death, and this man deserves to be punished."

Jesus takes a deep breath and turns to His Father with outstretched arms and proclaims, “I died on the cross so that this person might have eternal life and he has accepted Me as his Savior, so he is mine." My Lord continues; "His name is written in the Book of Life and no one can snatch him from me. Satan still does not understand the law of grace. This man is not to be given justice, but rather mercy."

As Jesus sits down, He quietly pauses and looks at his Father and replies, "There is nothing else that needs to be done. I've done it all."

The judge lifts His mighty hand and slams the gavel down. The following words bellow from his lips: "This man is free. The penalty for him has already been paid in full. Case dismissed." As my Lord leads me away, I can hear Satan ranting: "I won't give up, I'll win the next one."

I ask Jesus; "Have you ever lost a case?" Christ lovingly smiles and says, "Everyone that comes to Me and asks Me to represent them, receives the same verdict as you, PAID IN FULL!"

Blessings dear hearts. Walk with God today. Trust Him completely and be a blessing.

--- Pastor Cecil


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