THIRD IN MY TEACHING SERIES ON THE BLESSED LIFE, BY TROY DOBBS
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”Matthew 5:4
The idea behind this beatitude is that we’d grieve over our own sins in the same way we grieve over the death of a loved one. One bona fide mark of a follower of Jesus Christ is that he or she doesn’t excuse, rationalize, trivialize, belittle, or ignore sin. Rather, they grive over it, confess it, and repent of it.
Jesus is saying that we miss the point when we mourn more over what we’ve lost than what we’ve done. Oftentimes, we’d rather get it over with than genuinely grieve it.
From the Old Testament, David expressed grief to God over his sin against Uriah – murder – and Bathsheba – adultery.
“For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right to your verdict and justified when yo judge.”Psalm 51:3-4
David Had An Honest Awareness Of His Sin
David was completely honest with himself and with God regarding his sin. We learn a valuable lesson from David. A broken heart over sin is a prerequisite for genuine confession of sin. David understood that completely. He understood that sin is ultimately an offense against a holy God. With that in mind, our mourning over sin must emerge out of that reality: It is God who is offended by our sin.
Puritan Thomas Watson stated, “A wicked man will say he is a sinner, but a child of God says, I have done this evil.” Am I generic or specific with the confession of my sin?
Forgiveness Requires The Shedding Of Blood
In Leviticus chapter 1 we are given an image of what a burnt offering for sin looked like. The perfect, blameless animal was slaughtered, and the blood was “splashed against the sides of the altar at the entrance to the tent of meeting.” Then the animal was skinned and cut into pieces. The animal parts were washed and placed on the fire on the alter. “This was a burnt offering. a food offering, an aroma pleasing to God.”
This is a very gruesome image to envision. But it is exactly what the people of Israel were to do as a means of atonement for their sin. The sinner themselves had to kill the sacrifice and then watch as the sons of Aaron the priest drained the blood and sprinkled it all over the alter. Dobbs says, “What a sobering pageant of blood and death it would be to watch, especially knowing that it was being done because of your sins! How vividly the cost of your sin would be displayed before you, in all its bloody detail!”
Jesus Comforts Us In Our Sorrow
Sin is a big deal because it requires the shedding of blood to secure forgiveness. If I’m moved by the blood of the animals being shed, how much more should I be moved by the blood of the Savior Jesus Christ? How could I not experience a great mourning, sorrow, and remorse over my sins that cost Jesus his life? If I’m truly a follower of Christ, how could I be indifferent, insensitive, or hard-hearted to the incalculable price Christ paid for my sins – His very life!
When you take your sin seriously, Christ does’t leave you hanging – He comforts you and blesses you by forgiving you! Jesus can comfort us like now one else can because Christ deals completely with the sin over which we mourn. Jesus Christ cleanses us from the penalty, the presence, and the power of sin.
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