As white as snow.

January 28, 2014.

It’s snowing! Classes are cancelled! (This may not seem like a big deal, but this amount of snow in Chattanooga pretty much shuts the town down…).

Photo Jan 28, 12 30 07 PM

I decided for today’s post, I would address a scriptural allusion to snow and contemplate the beauty that the Lord has bestowed upon the earth simply through this frozen precipitation.

“‘Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson,
    they shall become like wool.'”
(Isaiah 1:18)

There is a truly beautiful hymn that draws it’s lyrics from this passage. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow…”  What a wonderful thought! The Creator, Lord of all, pure and holy, has made his people, stained with sin, worthy to be in his presence. We are made holy, as white as snow, through his power, and his judgment alone. This is the concept that should be on the lips of Christians everywhere- this is the gospel! This is the good news!

Yet let us not stop at this wonderful verse without reading the rest of the passage:

“‘Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson,
    they shall become like wool.
If you are willing and obedient,
    you shall eat the good of the land;
but if you refuse and rebel,
    you shall be eaten by the sword;
    for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.'”
(Isaiah 1:18-20)

From the onset of the Law of Moses throughout the ages, the Lord has set a blessing and a curse before us (Deut. 11:26). A blessing if we accept and submit to his will, and a curse if we rebel. There can be no other way- a lawgiver and a judge would wield no power if punishment was abated. Yet, we do serve a loving God, ready to forgive; he eagerly awaits our coming to him. That is not to make light of his power and judgement, yet simply to show the character of Him as he has revealed it to us from his word. I think Paul had a very clear understanding of this from his own experience, expressed in his first epistle to Timothy:

“I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful,appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying istrustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.”
(I Tim. 1:12-17)

Isaiah cried out when he saw the Lord sitting upon the throne, “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lordof hosts!” (Isa. 6:5) But, as the story goes, an angle took a coal from the fire and touched it to his lips and said “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.” (Verse 7) Though our sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow! For our Lord, Creator in power, has granted us forgiveness though his Son upon the cross! Hallelujah to the King of kings!

Let us remember our duty, then:

“And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'”
(Matt. 28:18-20)

Suggested Daily Reading: Deuteronomy 11, Isaiah 6, Matthew 28, Revelation 12.

Through Christ, let us change the world.

-Walter

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