Many have written much in recent years about “the deep things of God.” Blogs and books are written and given titles that picture going deeper, dwelling deeper, living deeper. Many times I have read these pages hoping to discover something deeper only to come away more confused than I was before. (Of course, Adrian Rogers often told us preacher boys that just because you can’t see the bottom of a creek doesn’t mean that it is deep. It could just be muddy.)
The question is NEVER “Does Christ receive sinners?” but “Do sinners receive Christ?” He opens His arms wide for sinners, but many sinners close their minds and hearts to Him. He would accept them, but they reject Him. That’s ok, right? I mean that’s their choice.
Speaking of the incarnation of Jesus, Martin Luther said that there were three miracles involved. “The first, that God became man; the second, that a virgin was a mother; and the third, that the heart of man should believe this.” Many hearts do not believe this. While we evangelical Christians are celebrating the entry of divinity into the world through the miracle of the virgin birth of Christ, the world is filled with those who object to this classic Christian doctrine.
You may think nothing you do will ever amount to anything for the Lord. You have no idea what God can do through you if you will commit your entire life to Him. Take the limitations off and the natural expectations down. Let God work and see what He is able to do. Lottie Moon is one of the greatest examples of what God can do as we surrender our lives to Him.
Even the idea of believing refers to individuals since only individuals can exercise faith; I do not see anything in the passage that would indicate that this “all” is restricted to something like all people groups, including some who can be saved. I do not think the passage even hints that this “all” is different from “all” including each person previously spoken of as under sin; of which “there is no distinction.” This understanding corresponds precisely with its usage before and in the following verses.
I remember hearing Dr. J. Howard Edington preach a message based on Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43, titled, “Jesus and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” at Beeson Divinity School (07/30/97). Since then, I discovered sermons similarly titled with a different name based on a different text, featuring Moses, Job, and Paul. If we knew with certainty that Hezekiah wrote Psalm 120; we could title this message, “Hezekiah and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.”