by Pastor Tim Burt
A few years back, I remember reading an article about a bird burned in a forest fire. A ranger found this bird literally petrified in ashes on the ground by the base of a tree. He has gently moved the bird with a stick and when he did, some baby chicks scurried out from under their dead mother's wings. It was explained that the loving mother, aware of the fire about to descend upon them, carried her chicks to the base of the tree and gathered them under her wings. Though she would have instinctively known to get some place high to escape the rising toxic smoke, instead of flying to safety and saving herself, she covered her chicks with her wings and saved them.
This story reminds me of Jesus and how He covers us with His wings. Psalm 91:4 says, “He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge.” He died to that we could be forgiven and have eternal life. The promises of God's word remind us that His covering did not stop with Jesus' death and resurrection.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, they became aware of something they had previously been able to take for granted - God's provision. When they sinned they immediately discovered they were naked. At this first step of their new form of dependency upon God, they needed help with their nakedness. God covered them. Gen 3:7 says, "Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves."
A covering covered their nakedness. It covers our also. Our relationship with Jesus does that. The blood He shed upon the cross in dying for the punishment for our sins covers and washes us so we that we become righteously presentable before God. 2 Corinthians 5:21 reveals, "God made Jesus who had never sinned to be the offering of our sin so that we might become the righteousness of God of through Christ Jesus"
What does that mean and what does that look like today? A picture is painted by Isaiah the prophet in Isaiah 61:10. "I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels."
These scriptures and others help us see that once we have received Jesus as our Savior, we gain a righteousness. This is not a righteousness we earn by being good, it is a righteousness earned by Jesus and given as a gift to us. Our faith in this righteousness given to us is like putting on a perfectly white robe. When God looks at us, He only sees the robe, white, pure, and without blemish. Our sins are washed away and we've been made righteous. The robe is God's covering for us so that Colossians 1:22 becomes true for us. "But now God has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in His sight, without blemish and free from accusation--"
Christians often feel like they are "unworthy" to ask God for help. If it were up to most of us, we also would consider ourselves unworthy. But, Jesus has made us worthy and a child of God that He loves and desires to help. We are not covered with fig leaves like Adam and Eve, we are covered by His blood that gave us the covering of His righteousness. Like the bird covering its chicks, Jesus gave His life and covered you so that you could be reconciled to God, be His child, receive His help, and be blessed in every area of your life. That is what the covering did for you! Can your faith accept that? Can you understand that God's love for you is not dependent upon your personal ability to be good? Romans 4:7-8 (NIV) "Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him."
He made you worthy so go to Him in faith when you need Him, and live for Him because He FIRST loved you!
"So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. (Hebrews 4:16 NLT)"
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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