Sunday – September 20, 2020
Word On Worship – Sunday – September 20, 2020
What shall we do? They will certainly hear that you have come, so do what we tell you…
Most of us are familiar with the term “armchair quarterback.” An armchair quarterback sits in his comfortable chair, favorite beverage in hand, munching potato chips and watching the quarterback on TV as a herd of 300-pound giants rushes furiously towards him. It’s easy to sit in your comfortable chair and give advice to the guy who is down on the field facing 300-pound gorillas. But it’s an altogether different matter to be the guy down on the field, making split-second decisions under incredible pressure. It’s easy in that situation to make mistakes. We need to be careful about judging someone who made a mistake in the midst of such pressure.
I don’t want to play armchair quarterback on the apostle Paul. It’s easy to second-guess what he did. We can all be instructed if we learn how prone we all are to make mistakes when we’re under pressure. We all err in our personal lives. Sometimes we err in discerning the will of God because it is at best an imperfect and tentative process. We err in our ministries, sometimes misjudging people or situations. We err in our marriages, in raising our children and make financial errors that we wish we could undo. We’ve made major decisions that turned out to be major mistakes. Yet we can be encouraged because if even the godliest of men, such as Paul, make mistakes. God is not thwarted by our mistakes.
Even though Paul erred, God graciously spared his life and will give him the opportunity to preach to the mob that had just attacked him (22:1-21). As a result of his imprisonment, he was able to present the gospel to governors and rulers with whom he otherwise would have had no contact. He eventually got an all-expenses paid trip to Rome and was able to witness to many in Caesar’s household. He had time to write his prison epistles, which are in our New Testament. All of these positive results illustrate the abundant grace of our God, who works all things together for good to those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28).
D. L. Moody said, “If you don’t go to work for the Lord because you’re afraid of making mistakes, you will probably make the greatest mistake of your life—that of doing nothing.” He’s right! We should get out of the armchair and into the game! We all should constantly be examining our lives to identify our sins and mistakes. When the Lord graciously opens our eyes to errors that we have made, we should learn from them and, if possible, try to correct them and ask forgiveness of those whom we have wronged. But in that recognition, we should not despair that we have somehow thwarted God’s plan for our lives. We should realize that in His grace, God works around and through our mistakes for His own glory and marvel that He can use bumbling sinners such as we are!