Is the age of sin and confession gone? Did it die with Billy Graham? It seems that we are never more to be convicted of sin, overwhelmed by guilt and desperate to run into the arms of Jesus for forgiveness. This is a tremendous loss. ⠀⠀
It seems as though we can only preach love and grace and mercy, perhaps prosperity and by all means happiness. But this is not the Gospel. This is not the whole truth. This is a lie, wrapped in truth and presented as holy.
While the familiar cadence of Billy Graham will be lost to many, I pray the message of Rev. Graham was one that will never end. Those behind him continue to speak the truth of God’s word; the entire truth. The “Just as I am” – sin and all, brokenness and all, anger and all, anxiety and all, ache and all addiction and all.
To be “Just I Am” we must acknowledge the truth of our situation. We are sinners; dead in sin and broken in darkness. Rev. Graham was confident in our need for God’s grace and therefore aware of our deadly curse of sin.
If we contemplate the common and foundational words of our religion: Jesus, grace, faith, mercy, love, sin, we understand that we do not have one without the other. If we don’t acknowledge the sin – we can’t understand the sacrifice of Jesus. We downgrade the crucifixion to a childhood story, or a yearly holiday.
When in fact, it is how Creator of the universe, acted justly and mercifully to redeem us from our sin.
There in lies the true Good News; Jesus takes the punishment. He steps in front of the wrath of God and allows us to remain unblemished in the eyes of the Father. This is the truth, this is the prosperity. Sin is death, and we are steeped in it. Jesus is life and he is reaching out to us.
Turn from your sin, and run into the arms of Jesus. He is our refuge from the wrath of a holy God. He is the good news. He is the grace, faith, mercy, and love that we all desire. But we can only see him for who he fully is, if we acknowledge who we fully are.
He is the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but through him. There is the whole truth. Rejoice in Heaven with Jesus Billy.