When there was no king

I caught a glimpse of a TV program yesterday, it was presented by Andrew Marr and was about fantasy novels. My favourite genre, but I heard a statement by one writer;

Joe Abercrombie, talking to Andrew Marr

“right and wrong these days are more of a question of where you stand.
People are very rarely utterly evil or utterly good in any real sense.

Really! Does he think that our world is ambiguous in the sense that right and wrong are a matter of perception, or where you stand? This coupled with reading a chapter from Judges 19 which is the story of the Levites concubine. Then a post on facebook about the same chapter after reading a report about isis in Iraq and their treatment of women and children using them as sex slaves, and more. I quickly jotted down a few thoughts, said some prayers and went to bed.

Andrew Marr speaking about George R.R.Martin the writer of “Game of Thrones”

There is no reward for doing the right thing and ruthlessness often wins the day. 
The scale of Matin’s canvas allows us to experience moral grime at a new level.

Perhaps Andrew Marr should refresh himself with Judges 19 and then come back and rephrase that…allows us to experience moral grime as it has always been expressed – as utter evil, as sin.

I believe we must be really careful to say that evil or sin is not about a question of where you stand, or how you look at it. Certainly if you are in a boat being tossed about by the waves, then the land will look different from how you approach it, but it is still land, the same land. If we have no foundation then right and wrong do not exist and the world becomes like the game of thrones novels, where as long as you can get away with it, be ruthless then everything is fair game.

My foundation is Christ first and foremost. In Judges 19 you read that when there is no king then all sorts of sin happens. Sin goes to such a level that it ends up causing sickening evil on a women that seems to be caught in the net of…that was accepted culture so it is okay to have a concubine (sex slave) and to top it all the man is called the husband? 

This story screams at me as being historical truth and that is why it is even more sickening. But these things are going on all the time across the whole Earth. Sex slaves, and people treating other people as anything less than sacred.

Paul writes that when there is an increase in sin then there is an increase in grace;

Romans 5:18-19

18 Therefore, as through one man’s offence judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

20 Moreover the law entered that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, 21 so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

I like to think of it as sin is darkness and light is grace. When sin is really bad then the contrast between sin and grace is immense. You can see in the picture that the contrast between the darkness where the light has not touched is deep and so you can not see any of the details of the trees or buildings, but you can see the immense colour of the sky.

Another contrast is when we see the difference between when we have a king, a foundation to lead us, that is Christ. He is our King and he is the husband of the church which is his bride. But we are no concubine but a royal partner that has been given gifts to bring light into this world. Jesus when he was faced with a woman who had committed adultery, had been caught in the very act. By the law the punishment should have been death but Jesus forgave her because He knew that none was without sin, and we are the same if we do not accept Jesus.

John 8

 Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to Him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?”This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.

So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience,went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours?Has no one condemned you?”

11 She said, “No one, Lord.”

And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”

12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”

Jesus offers us all the chance to be renewed and have our sinful body killed with his so that we can take on a new body which is not sinful but through the Holy Spirit leads us through sanctification to the bigger goal which is life with Christ both in this world and in the next.

So to collect these ideas together; I believe that sin is sin, and that we are all condemned  through this sin, but that God has offered and already paid for these sins through Jesus Christ. The world only looks ambiguous if you have no foundation to stand upon, if you are being blown about at sea. Do not be gripped by public opinion but seek the Lord and He will impress on your heart His moral code.

Dear Lord,

You sent your son to save us all,
I pray that we all lead others to Christ
as He is the only gate through
which we will be given the eternal gift of salvation.

Praise Jesus He is our King,
Praise Jesus He is the churches loving and forgiving Husband
Praise Jesus He is our friend

Amen

 

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