Dear Friends:

Do you, like I, have trouble listening to the news and have trouble determining that what is being said is truthful these days? Is what I hear truth or spin, the full story, or selected bits? Like so many, we are dangerously tempted to just shut it all down and move along life as though it will all go away on its own, but it doesn’t. The goal of pundits and advertisers is to gain our trust in assuring us what is being said is more truthful than what their opponent is saying. The issue of credibility is becoming more and more difficult to resolve in life today.

Credibility is what much of our modern life really functions on. Every leader, business owner, politician, religious leader, university professor, and family member can only establish a relationship with us and we with others. Think about it; there is a thing called a “Credit Rating” that most people when they wish to purchase a house or borrow money from a bank, must contend with. A credit rating is a number that is calculated based on your ability to pay a debt back. A high credit rating represents to banks a high level of certainty that you are a person of your word and that if you say you will pay back the loan, experience shows that you can and have. A low credit rating means that you are not reliable and will likely default on your obligations. Indeed, a credit rating is a measure of trust.

What does this have to do with the Word of God? Well, the Ten Commandments act as a measure by which God can establish trust with us. Because God has given us free will, God may know all the possibilities of what we might choose, but the freedom to choose remains ours. Trust is about relationships. The more we fulfill God’s commandments to love, the more God can trust us with more of his grace, trust, and vision. In short, if we can prove to be reliable with little, we will be trusted with more of God. Like the analogy of a bank, when a bank forgives your debts, they are not forgetting the infraction but making an investment in the continuation of the relationship with the one who owes. Likewise, God’s forgiveness of our sins is an investment in us. It is an investment based on the hope that we will become better and live up to the fullest potential of our creation: to adore and serve God.

Christ did not come to “abolish the law and the prophets,” because this remains the measure of how trust is established, but rather he came to establish a new deal, a new relationship, and new hope. Indeed, Christ came to invest his entire self in us. Ruining one’s credit does not harm the lender; it only harms the one who needs help. God is not seriously damaged by our sins, buy our relationship with him is strained. Our sins never destroy God, and that is why He can invest so generously in humanity, but they do wound Him. Sin ruins us since they ruin the trust in the lives of those whom we love and depend upon.

God is willing to forgive all debts, but only if we are willing to take the opportunity to change and live up to our full potential. To adore God and serve Him always!