But his wife said to him, "If the LORD had desired to kill us, He would not have accepted a burnt offering and a grain offering from our hands, nor would He have shown us all these things, nor would He have told us such things as these at this time." (Judges 13:23)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. You ever feel like the Lord is out to get you? Nothing goes right? Everything goes wrong. It rains and then pours—a miserable chain of events that pile up to cause you sadness and despair. Samson's parents, when they saw the Angel of the Lord, were scared. They thought they might be doomed. But they weren't.
And neither are you. After all, God can't be out to get you when He Himself is your Savior. He can't die for you on the cross and then crush you like a bug! He can't say your sins are wiped out and then hold them against you!
The Lord is for you. He's on your side. That's why He was born, baptized for you, carried your sins, suffered for them, died, rose again and ascended to the right hand of the Father. All for you. It's why He has baptized you, absolved you, taught you His Word and fed you with His body and blood. Jesus doesn't do those things just so He can put an end to you!
God the Father accepts the sacrifice of His Son. Jesus offered Himself in exchange for you. He bore your sins so you don't have to. He was forsaken by the Father so that you may see the Lord and not die. He gives us His Word so that we know what His heart toward us is one of grace and forgiveness, not vengeance and smiting.
It is our own sinfulness that causes us to fear the Lord. After all, the Lord could rightly punish us for our sins. But He doesn't. Instead He bears them for us. While our sins can make God seem scary, and even the rough things in our lives seem to persuade us that God is against us, His Word and gifts are a certain and sure promise that God is all for us. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
If God Himself be for me, I may a host defy; For when I pray, before me My foes, confounded, fly. If Christ, my head and master, Befriend me from above, What foe or what disaster Can drive me from His love? (LSB 724:1)
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Questions or comments regarding the Reflections may be sent to the Rev. Mark Buetow, Reflections Editor, email@example.com.