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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Sinners in Zion

Recently horror filled my mind as I read across a little phrase found in Isaiah 33:14: "...Sinners in Zion..." I type this message with difficulty because I find this statement so horriable that I just don't quite know how to handle it. It is a weighty sort of statement that is difficult for me to swallow. When I ponder about the rather cryptic name, "Zion," I think of how it is often used in regard to the city of Jerusalem, especially in light of the activity that took place in the temple of God. Throughout the Bible, Zion is commonly regarded as the city of God, where the people of God dwell. Yet Isaiah the prophet takes note of sinners in their midst. Like oil and vinegar, the two simply cannot mix.

Yet today it seems that oil and vinegar do mix. It seems today that sinners don't react quite like Isaiah said. In Isaiah 33:14, he noted how it was impossible for the sinner to continue on in Zion. He noted the terror and trembling that seized them, as the presence of God made it impossible for them to feel comfortable staying in Zion as they were. He asked, "Who among us can live with the consuming fire? Who among us can live with continual burning?" Isaiah procedes to answer his own question in the next verse: "He who walks righteously and speaks with sincerity..." (v. 15). It's amazing though that today, it seems just about anybody can be amongst the people of God, and feel down right comfy at that!

Yet it ought not be this way. Rather, we are called to be the salt of the world (Matthew 5:13). We, as the people of God ought to impact those who come into our midst. Why? Because God is in our midst. The amazing thing about salt is that whenever it is present, it is always something that is noticed. It instantly changes whatever it is placed in, and is always noticeable.

I think we need to ask ourselves some tough questions. Do our lives ever challenge those around us? Do our lives bring sinners under conviction when they are simply in our midst? Or is it the other way around, do sinners seem to have more influence over our lives than we do in theirs? If sinners are having a greater impact on us than we have on them, then we are not being the salt Christ called us to be.

I'll close with a quote by the South African Evangelist, Keith Daniels: "[Sinners should say to us:] I can't enjoy my sin anymore because of your life."

Jimmy H

 2005/3/27 20:05Profile

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