Week 20, Day 3 - May 18, 2022
Week 20, Day 3
May 18, 2022
Scripture: Romans 2
“Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4)
When I read Romans 2:4 today, God pressed the older brother in the Prodigal Son story on my heart. You are familiar with the Parable in Luke 15 of the lost son who is fond. There’ a great banquet thrown for the return of the son who wished his father to die, and took his inheritance and squandered it away. The lost son repents and returns home, to a father with open arms. He throws a great party for his son who was lost and has come home. Meanwhile, the older brother, who never left, who continued dutifully following the father, is unwilling to party and filled with contempt.
I imagine God saying to him, ““Why do you show contempt for the riches of my kindness towards your brother? My forbearance and patience is for all that are far off. Do you not realizing that my kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4 with modification)
The intention of God’s kindness is to lead people to repentance. While the older brother demanded justice and wrath, the father was throwing a party.
I don’t know what to make of this connection just yet. But I suspect it is the Spirit talking to me about my own vengeance and wrathful judgment of others that shows contempt towards the gracious kindness of God.
The only real antidote for that is within this chapter. Realizing that I’m a sinner, deserving of wrath. I don’t stand aside from the party, full of contempt. I realize I’m the lost son, who has been redeemed.
You are too.
So our response is simply gratitude, and a change of heart. God saves.
Let us not show contempt for the kindness of God – but Joy! Joy like there is in heaven over one lost person who is found.
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Jordan Ickes, Minister of Etna Green Church of Christ.