In his book MERE CHRISTIANITY C. S. Lewis once asked, "If you examined a hundred people who had lost their faith in Christianity, I wonder how many of them would turn out to have been reasoned out of it by honest argument? Do not most people simply drift away?"
God's request through His prophet Isaiah says: "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."
The prophet's appeal to come and 'reason together' reveals God's gracious invitation to all men. It literally means to be "reasonable" by repenting and turning to God. Their sin is described as 'scarlet' and 'red like crimson', referring to their guiltiness before God. The term 'crimson' also means, "worm," referring to the colorfast red dye of the scarlet worm. The eradication of this stain turns it snowy white and is symbolic of the life changing grace of God, which delivers men from the guilt and condemnation of sin. Thus the prophet reminds his readers that God stands ready to cleanse and forgive all who will turn to Him.
It seems to be 'a given' that the basic reason that separates man from God is man's sin. The apostle Peter writes; "be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance." Salvation in this passage is linked with repentance. We can see that God is not willing that any should perish.
Nearing the end of his life, here on earth, Peter wrote this letter in which he offers some insight into the nature of time and eternity. He beckons us to view time in both thousand-year units and as mere days, recalling the beginnings of creation...Peter reminds us that God values a day as much as a thousand years, affirming the importance of the here and now. But he also affirms God's activity long before we came on the scene.
Peter's perspective challenges us to live with a view toward eternity and values that last. We need to avoid getting caught up in the here and now and losing sight of our eternal destiny. Neither the joys of today nor the problems of this week can quite compare with what God has prepared for us in eternity. Peter urges us to stick with the basics of the faith and resist the fleeting enticements offered in this present moment.
The question we can ask of ourselves is this: are we simply drifting away? as C.S. Lewis states, or should we endeavor to live with a view toward eternity and the values that last?
References: Isaiah 1:18, 2 Peter 3:8, Liberty Annotated Study Bible, The Word In Life Study Bible, Thomas Nelson Pub. Nashville, TN- Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis.
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