Podcast: 14 April 2020

Good morning and welcome to Tuesday’s podcast. Yesterday we finished Paul’s second letter to Timothy. Today we begin Galatians with chapter 1 v 1-9. Right now I want to look at verses 3 and 4.

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father.


“…Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age.”

Yesterday we touched briefly on the love for the world that had led Demas away in Paul’s hour of need. Today we are reminded that Jesus gave himself to rescue us from the present evil age… It’s the world again!

So maybe, just maybe, God is trying to get our attention this Easter time.

We know that at the heart of the Gospel is forgiveness. Jesus gave himself for our sin. To take the weight of our guilt and shame… to lift it from us, to place it upon his own shoulders and to take it to the grave. and we know that when he rose again, he came back to life but our guilt and shame got left in the grave. it is gone, it’s power is broken and we are free. Free to approach God, yes…. and free from sin, guilt, fear and shame.

So why do we still walk around filled with fear, shame and guilt?

Surely it can’t just be me??

It was once said that the heart of the problem is the problem of the human heart. And at the heart of our heart’s problem is the problem of sin and and the accompanying feelings of shame, guilt and fear.

And it’s this fear that keeps us from becoming who we really are. Instead we hide and shrink from all that God has for us.

Before Adam and Eve ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil they were naked and felt no shame. They ate and they covered up… they hid themselves from each other, they pointed the finger of blame and even tried to hide from God.

Because that is what sin does…

And this “present evil age” is hell bent on highlighting, magnifying and multiplying our fear and hiddenness.

Flick through social media…. I don’t measure up. My family should be… well better… I should be thinner, prettier, I should be doing more…


Sit through TV adverts… If I only had this or that then I would be more likeable, more acceptable, more desirable.

and so the world magnifies what we are not… and then it holds out a solution…

Shopping makes you feel great!

Food! Sweet things make you feel good… oh and what about saturated fat!

Have another beer… it’ll help dull those negative feelings…

100 likes a 1000 follows… you’re doing ok

Just a little bit more… that’ll solve all your problems!!

The magic key is just around the corner!

Jesus died to rescue us from the lies and enticements of this fallen world. Because the things of this world will beat us down and little by little draw us away from the truth, the love and freedom of the father.

So how do we deal with the rubbish that pollutes our hearts and the fear that keeps us locked up?

Well the Bible is crystal clear… don’t hide it!

Both Old Testament and New:

Psalm 32:5…Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin.

James 5:16…Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.

I often say that if one day I lead my own church I’m going to have a sign placed above the door… It will read, “no perfect people allowed.”

Why? Because when we own that we are not perfect… but God loves us anyway… when we realise that God’s grace is just that…. undeserved… and yet lavishly, scandalously, abundantly poured out on us anyway…

When we get it… when we really get it… that we are loved… despite everything… despite me!

when we are prepared to allow others to see the mess and the brokenness… when our ears hear from our own mouths that we are not perfect, that we don’t have it all together, that we don’t deserve anything or anyone…

Then maybe… just maybe… a little bit of grace might engulf us. We become a little less judgemental… we become people who it is safe to be around… who others can be real around… who are ready to hear others’ truth. And church will become the healing, restoring, loving, beautiful community that this world so desperately needs.


Thank you Jesus that you died to set us free. Help us to find someone who we can open our hearts to, who we can be real with, who will receive our truth and bear our burdens. Help us to build communities of openness and honesty where we can heal and learn to become the people you always intend us to be. Amen.

BIBLE READING: Galatians 1:1-9

Paul, an apostle – sent not from men nor by a man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead – and all the brothers and sisters with me,

To the churches in Galatia:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel – which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! As we have already said, so now I say again: if anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse!