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Weekly Wisdoms for the week of March 2, 2020

You are more sinful than you can believe, but you are more loved than you can imagine.

Outside of conservative Christian circles, it's not very common for people to believe that they are inherently bad. Instead, people's logic often goes like this: Sure, I occasionally do bad things, but at heart I'm a good person.

Although it may be tempting to give yourself credit as being a good (or, in Biblical lingo, righteous) person at heart, such a view of human nature is at odds with what God reveals in his word. God makes it very clear that every one of us is "bad." We don't just do bad things; we are bad.

The Apostle Paul exclaims that because of our sin every one of us falls short of God's radiant splendor and glory (Romans 3:23). None of us are good—that is, righteous (Romans 3:10).

Our unrighteousness is not due to the fact that we break God's commands. Instead, we are unrighteous because we are "in Adam," to borrow the language of Paul in Romans 5. Even people who did not sin by breaking a command still died because they were by nature sinners (Romans 5:14).

The bad news is that you're sinful by nature. Even if you lived your whole life without breaking a single command of God you'd still reap death. The bad news is probably worse than you may care to admit.

Fortunately, that makes the good news better than you had imagined. Despite your sinful nature, God offers the life of his very son for you (Romans 5:8-10). God doesn't owe you anything, but he gives you everything. That's love.

Your sin is placed on Christ, and Christ's righteousness is placed on you. You gain what he deserved—life—and he gains what you deserved—death. How great is the love God lavishes on us! (1 John 3:1)

Life is short... and it's not about us. Eternity is long... and it's all about God.

When God made the universe, he intended that everything in it would point praise back at Him. Every glittering star, every speck of sand, every ocean wave, every strand of DNA—everything was designed to declare how great God is. Even in making humanity, God really wasn't too concerned about us; he was thinking mostly about Himself. God was focused on how we would magnify and glorify Him (see Isaiah 43:7).

God is most concerned about Himself. In essence, God approaches every decision with this question: "What would bring me the most glory and honor and what would make me look the best in this situation?" Then he acts accordingly.

God declares, "I am the Lord; that is my name! I will not give my glory to another or my praise to idols" (Isaiah 42:8). God made everything, and He made all of it to give glory to Himself.

We far too easily forget the truth that this entire universe is about God, and instead we try to hijack the spotlight to focus on us. We spend our short, little 60, 70, or 80 years here on Earth trying to make much of us, forgetting that all of creation is designed to make much of God.

God made you for a purpose, and He sent Jesus Christ into this world to invite you to join His purpose for your life, which is to magnify His name. So, don't waste your life magnifying something that is like a wisp of vapor or a puff of smoke, which is visible for a little while and then disappears into thin air. Instead, leverage your life as part of the eternal story of God—a story in which every second lifts up and magnifies God.

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