Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Regrets

A few years ago I was blessed to be able to travel to Israel on a study tour. One of the stops was to a museum that housed the Dead Sea Scrolls and on display was Isaiah 53. I happened to be gazing at the passage and the professor who was fluent in ancient Hebrew paused to read the same passage. I had a thought I didn't act on, and I regret it every time I read Isaiah 53. I regret not asking him to read out loud to me that very ancient text that describes the act of atonement. This morning, my devotion included Isaiah 53 and I again went back to that glass enclosed display of Isaiah 53 and regret not acting on the impulse. What I do not regret is accepting the translations of this most important passage of scripture.

Isaiah 53: 4 Surely he took up our infirmities
and carried our sorrows,
yet we considered him stricken by God,
smitten by him, and afflicted.

5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to his own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

I also have many regrets from past mistakes (iniquities). To think and accept that all the consequences of all my mistakes, plus all the consequences of every human being's mistakes were laid upon the Lord as he hung between heaven and earth is the greatest gift given to humanity. Reading and applying the passage from Isaiah 53 has never not moved me to awe. That day in Israel I didn't want to bother my professor while he was deep in thought as he leaned over the glass studying the ancient text. I don't have to worry about not bothering the Lord as I also "lean" into the passage and reflect that all my (and yours and yours and yours and yours) iniquities, sorrows, diseases, transgressions, fears, infirmities, mistakes, etc, etc. were "laid on him".

Because of what the Lord Jesus did, I, and every person has the opportunity to be forgiven, made whole, renewed, made new, healed, become joyful, and live a life without any more regrets.

Romans 10 speaks of how to receive this wonderful gift.

9 That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

I am so glad, a fellow co-worker (Craig Kirby) led me into a prayer of Romans 10 as a 19 year old. That is the single most important decision I have ever made and that one erased all regrets, past, present and future.

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