Thursdays With Oswald—Not To Tell Us, But To Make Us

This is a weekly series with things I’m reading and pondering from Oswald Chambers. You can read the original seed thought here, or type “Thursdays With Oswald” in the search box to read more entries.

Not To Tell Us, But To Make Us

     Our righteousness has to be in excess of the righteousness of the man whose external conduct is blameless according to the law—what does that produce? despair straightaway. When we hear Jesus say “Blessed are the pure in heart,” our answer, if we are awake is, “My God, how am I going to be pure in heart? If ever I am to be blameless down to the deepest recesses of my intentions, You must do something mighty in me.” That is exactly what Jesus Christ came to do. He did not come to tell us to be holy, but to make us holy.

From Biblical Ethics

Does it ever bother you that Jesus tells us, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect”? It bothers me, because it sounds too hard, even unrealistic. Okay, let’s be honest: It sounds impossible!

It is impossible if I try to be perfectly righteous on my own. But the death and resurrection of Jesus paid for my atonement—my “at one-ment” with God. And Jesus has also asked the Father to send me the Holy Spirit. He is sanctifying me — making me into a holy, perfectly righteous saint in the eyes of my Heavenly Father.

I can’t do it.

But I can surrender and let Him do it.

2 Responses to “Thursdays With Oswald—Not To Tell Us, But To Make Us”

  1. Frank Pray Says:

    Craig, I’m reminded of the core scriptural truths expressed in the vernacular of the first 3 steps of the AA 12 step program: essentially: I can’t; God can; I give it to God.

    BTW: Here in Orange County CA I have had the privilege of attending Saddleback Church [Rick Warren] over the years and have participated in the scripture based 12 step program called “Celebrate Recovery.” As you know, that model for churches is available for introduction, and if your flock does not have that option, maybe you and the elders will give it some thought. Google “Celebrate Recovery Saddleback Church” for information.


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