Sunday – July 3, 2016 – Read the Word on Worship
Word On Worship – Sunday – July 3, 2016 Download / Print
“And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.”
God didn’t accept Abel’s offering out of arbitrary unfairness. Nor did he accept it because it was Abel’s best effort. Abel was, by nature, just as much a sinner as Cain was. God accepted it because Abel offered it in faith in response to God’s word. It had nothing to do with Cain’s efforts or Abel’s efforts. It had everything to do with God’s just requirement for a blood sacrifice to be the only means of approaching Him.
Let’s suppose that you are a football fan, and you really wanted to go to the Super Bowl. You went down to the stadium and started to walk through the turnstile. The ticket attendant says, “Where’s your ticket?” You say, “Oh, I don’t have one of those silly pieces of paper. But I want you to know that I am a committed football fan. I watch every game. I know the statistics on every player. There is no more dedicated fan than I.” He will say, “I don’t care; you need a ticket.” So you leave the stadium and go find an artist. You have him draw a ticket with a picture of a football player on it. He writes on it in neat letters, “Super Bowl Ticket.” You go back to the stadium and hand that ticket to the man. He looks at it and says, “What’s this?” You say, “That’s my ticket. You said I needed a ticket to get into the game.”
You could argue with him all day that your ticket is prettier than those printed tickets everyone else is giving him. You can tell him how much effort and expense you went to in order to have that ticket made. He won’t care. The only way to gain entrance to the game is to present the ticket issued by the proper authority. It has nothing to do with your character. It has nothing to do with your dedication as a fan. It has nothing to do with the effort or expense you went to in order to produce your own version of it. It has everything to do with it being the ticket required by the management for entrance.
God has said that the only ticket into heaven is perfect righteousness. No one has it. No one can achieve it. But in His grace, God offers it as a free gift through the death of His Son, the only acceptable Substitute. Coming to God with that ticket robs us of all pride in our own goodness and good works. But it is the only ticket acceptable at heaven’s gate. Cain didn’t like that. His pride in his own efforts made him angry when his ticket was rejected. He was angry at God, but also at his brother, who got in by showing the right ticket. His anger led him into depression and jealousy. It all stemmed from his pride which he tried to present to God on his own terms. Sin always stems from within.