[SW184] 05/02/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015
“Lord, Make Me Right!”
2Corinthians 5:15 and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.
2Corinthians 5:21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
Now, when you say, “Lord, make me right,” you’re not asking Him to help you win an argument, religious or otherwise.
You’re asking Him to make you what you cannot possibly be without Jesus Christ. The “might” in 2Corinthians 5:21 means “would.” There’s no question that He will!
You’re asking Him to make you right with HIM.
That’s righteousness — being right with God. It’s a heart thing, a change in you that cost the Cross for His Son.
And I see that He took that cross so we would no longer live for ourselves. We would no longer be selfish and self-centered. We would live for Christ who died and rose again to make us able to live for Him.
Being right with God isn’t about doing good things. No one do enough good things to make yourself right in God’s eyes.
There’s only one Way. His Son.
Why is there only one Way to be right in God’s eyes?
Because we begin life as sinners; we all do. No one is exempt. We’re all rebels without a cause. That’s because of Adam’s rebellion against God’s single command, in the Garden of Eden.
God knew he would, and already had prepared a lamb for sacrifice, even before the world was formed (Revelation 13:8). That’s why there’s only one Way. It cost Him greatly — the sacrifice of His Son on our behalf — even from before time began.
Why would He do that? Because sin separates you from God. He gave — that’s a gift — His one and only Son, so sins you committed before you knew Him would be forgiven by Him, and slavery to sin could be done away with.
Then you can come near to Him. Then you can become His child (Romans 8:15)! Then you can live for His Son and not yourself any longer! Then others are drawn and saved and transformed so they, too, live for His Son!
Lord, make me right! Not like the Pharisees who dotted i’s and crossed t’s to try to show God how good they were, who studied the Word of God backwards and forwards.
He knew the hearts of the Pharisees, Sadducees, chief priests and Sanhedrin. He knew they would be His Son’s persecutors and executioners. Crucify Him! That’s what they cried to the Romans who ruled over them.
Dotting i’s and crossing t’s is an outward action. Good deeds are outward actions. You can do all the right things, yet have a heart dark enough to crucify the Son of God.
Look at Jesus’ judgment of the publican and the tax collector in this parable.
The publican wasn’t really praying. He was in a prayerful position and in the temple, a place of prayer, but all he did was boast about how well he did, following all the rules and regulations of the law given to God by Moses. He was proud of himself.
In Verse 9, the publican’s own words reveal his heart even further. He is beyond boastful. He tells God, “I’m not like OTHER people.” You know the ones, Lord — those who are swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector who is here in the temple with me. See me? I do everything right. They don’t.
In the heart of that man, who did all the right things, was contempt for others (v. 1). He trusted in himself and how many right things he did, how well he dotted i’s and crossed t’s, how many good deeds he did. He was so good in his own eyes that he considered that he was better than all those wicked sinners. He was sure he was doing just fine. But his heart was all wrong.
I hope that doesn’t describe you. I know it doesn’t describe me, because I no longer live for myself, but for Christ. I do not boast in what I have done, but in what He has done, is doing, and will yet do in me.
He showed my heart to me when He woke me up by allowing a great shaking of everything in me that could be shaken.
It was mercy and grace from God. What? Being sick with progressive MS was mercy and grace from God? It was what woke me up and turned me back to Him. It was grace, indeed!
I went back to church after nearly a lifetime away from God. I knew something was missing in my life, and I knew it was Him.
This is important — I didn’t want anything FROM God. I just wanted God!
My pastor led this old black sheep to look at Jesus Christ. I began to read the Bible, the Word of God. And I began to see myself as I truly was. It wasn’t pretty.
But oh, my! I didn’t just see how bad I was. I saw how good HE is! Grace and mercy!
And so I cried out to Him, for mercy, like the tax collector! “God, be merciful to me, the sinner!” Now that’s what God would have liked to hear from the Pharisee. Save me, bring me near, O God! Change my heart! I want to know You! My sin, my pride, my high estimation of myself stands in the way!
Who went away justified? The tax collector. God forgave him of his past sins. That’s God’s mercy and grace, He forgave me for all my past sins, when I received Him as my Lord and Savior. But He wasn’t finished yet. I still struggled with sin.
Then I said, “Lord make me right!” Lord, make me right on the inside, make my HEART right! He’ll do the same for you. That’s why His Father sent Him. Then you’ll live for Him!
Christianity is not about do’s and don’ts, though you will do things that are right in God’s eyes when you are truly His.
It won’t be to impress people with your goodness. That’s pride, and in comparing yourself with others, you show that you have contempt in your heart. You are yet like the Pharisee.
But when you have Him in you, you will do things that are right in God’s eyes. It will be because you know that it is HIS blood that washed you clean, HIS righteousness that is now in you. And there’s more.
When you are filled with His Holy Spirit, pride flees, beloved! You will say, “THE LORD answered my prayer, and HE made my HEART right, HE is continuing to make me more and more like Him every day!”
He gets all the praise, all the honor, for it is HIS work in you (Philippians 2:12)!
HIS holiness in you, HIS love in you, HIS Holy Spirit large and in charge. HE makes you right, and then what you do is for the right reason — out of a complete and absolute compulsion to use every means to bring everyone else to that shaking place, where they see themselves as they truly are, and cry out, “Lord, make me right!”
You tell them the very, very, very Good News of Jesus Christ! You tell them your story, so they might see Jesus Christ in you and through you!
Rushing, flood-stage rivers of water flow from your belly — the Holy Spirit (John 7:38)!
Glory to God! The Lord makes you right!
Ask Him now, and He will do it!