So I’m reading through my favorite book in the Bible, Romans. I’m now into chapter three and I’m struck by the fact that Paul spends the first three and a half chapters telling people really bad news. All the way up to Romans 3:20 Paul is explaining that we as human beings are in desperate need. On top of explaining that we are in desperate need, he takes away everything that we usually grab onto for security. He takes away religion and rule following. He takes away our idols (anything that we worship and serve besides God). He takes away our moral relativism, thinking that we are better than others, and that ought to be enough for God. He strips away every single thing that any human being could possibly hold onto for security and hope. Why does he do this? Why does Paul start with the bad news? This is not popular to talk about sin and stuff like that, so why do it? Two reasons come to my mind and I’m sure there are many more. 1) ITS TRUE. Could anything be more true than the fact that you and I have been on a desperate search to find hope and meaning, and atonement and come up empty at every turn? 2) The good news is revealed for just how good it is, against the backdrop of the bad news. The light of the dawn shines bright across the darkness of night. The depth of our sin and shame, makes the depth of God’s goodness and righteousness more clear. So with easter on its way it does me good to reflect on just how broken, lost and wounded I was, and would be if it weren’t for Jesus. Its a good thing Romans doesn’t end at 3:20, but that it continues and quickly turns to the good news in Romans 3:21-26. As David Crowder says in one of his songs, “Rescue is coming”.

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