"Do not just hear the Word of God and think hearing is enough. DO what it says!" James 1:22

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Lesson 20: GRACE... Good for the Gross

Grace is good.
Grace is not gross.

Quoted from the USDA website...
"Is it dangerous to eat raw or undercooked ground beef?
Yes. Raw and undercooked meat
may contain harmful bacteria.
USDA recommends not eating or tasting
raw or undercooked ground beef.
To be sure all bacteria are destroyed,
cook meat loaf, meatballs, and hamburgers
to a safe minimum internal temperature of 160 °F.
Use a food thermometer to check
that they have reached a safe internal temperature."

So why would our CBS teacher be quoting
from the USDA website?
Good question!  Because the professionals at the
United States Department of Agriculture
are the experts when it comes to
the care and cleanliness of our food.

Today, the students were shown
a package of raw ground beef and asked
if they would consume it if it were offered to them.
(three said yes...
one because she thought I meant AFTER it was cooked,
one because she said she was just being silly,
and one because he said he would if it was a dare.)
I was actually glad that these students said yes.
It gave them and the other students the opportunity
to hear the importance of NOT consuming raw meat
and the seriousness of the damage doing so can cause.

When asked why we SHOULD NOT eat raw meat,
one student perfectly answered,
"Because it's raw and has bacteria
which can cause us to be sick and even die."
Then I asked for a word to describe eating raw meat.

The students were asked to picture the raw meat
as the "detestable ways" of the people in Ephesus.
That is...
"sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire,
who practices divination or sorcery,
interprets omens, engages in witchcraft,
or casts spells, or who is a medium
or spiritist or who consults the dead."
Deuteronomy 18:10-11
God HATES these things!
Deuteronomy 18:12
Just as we think eathing the raw hamburger is GROSS,
God sees the witchcraft, sorcery, fortune telling
and anything like these things as

Then the students were asked if they were invited to
a friends house for dinner
and they knew that friend regularly ate raw meat,
would they go?
They all said no.

We learn from Lesson 20
that not only did Paul go where people were doing gross things,
he stayed there... for TWO YEARS. Acts 19:10
Are we willing to show such GRACE?
Wouldn't we want to stop our friends
from consuming raw meat and SAVE THEIR LIVES.

God wanted the people of Ephesus
to know the saving Grace and Power of His Love
through the resurrection of His Son, Jesus.
God didn't want them to do "detestable things."
He wanted to save their lives.
And He chose Paul as a means to deliver the message...
GRACE is good, even for the gross.

Picture this...
a delicious and yummy burger... mmmm....
It's GOOD, right?
(vegetarians, just replace the burger for a soy patty. wink.)
Let's look at its layers...
THE BUN: God's creation... clean soil... pure
THE BURGER: dark... like our sin
THE KETCHUP: Christ's blood covers our sin
THE MAYO: because of Jesus, we are made white as snow
THE CHEESE (or mustard): because we ask Jesus
into our hearts, we will see the golden streets in Heaven
THE LETTUCE: for our faith to "grow" as lettuce grows,
we must nurture it with church, Bible study,
prayer and fellowship
THE BUN: our lives begin and end with...
 Revelation 1:8
“I am the Alpha and the Omega,”
says the Lord God,
“who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Will you choose to be a good tasting burger,
allowing others to
 "Taste and see that the LORD is good?"
 Psalm 34:8

Are there "gross" things in your life
keeping you from tasting the goodness of God's

It is my prayer that each and every heart
that heard our Wrap Up on Lesson 20 today
will have a "Paul" in their life to open their eyes
to the POWER (not magic) of God's will for them
and experience His awesome grace so much
that they just HAVE to share it with
everyone around them!

Praise be to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!