What to do on a Long Journey

Image result for psalms of ascent

Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice!
Let Your ears be attentive
To the voice of my supplications.
If You, Lord, should mark iniquities,
O Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with You,
That You may be feared.

~Psalm 130:1-4

Have you ever realized the depth of your sin and felt crushed by it? On a journey that would have take many travelers days to make, Jews in Jesus’ day had plenty of time to consider their standing before the Lord. They were also going up to Jerusalem to worship in the Temple, and that meant they must be “clean.” Mikviot (ritual baths) were abundant, for the purpose of spiritual cleansing.

But just as it does today, true spiritual cleansing happened internally through forgiveness. So, on the long journey, the people cried out to the Lord, asking Him to hear their voice. They contemplated the weight of sin, acknowledging they could not stand if the Lord marked their iniquities.

As so many psalms do, Psalm 130 has an important “but.” But there is forgiveness with you! They knew God’s forgiveness was the key!

Forgiveness is the key for all of us! Do you realize God’s forgiveness can set you free from the penalty of sin (death)? Do you know the love of God reaches into the darkest depths of our souls to cleanse us from all our iniquities (sin and wickedness)? Forgiveness is a key that fits the lock of bondage.

When we miss the mark (sin) and are in bondage to sin, we always have the key to freedom! Insert God’s forgiveness and turn the key!

Our tour group arrives in Israel today after a long journey of our own. Twenty hours of travel (including a layover) leaves plenty of time to contemplate our standing with the Lord as well. Our journey had a different starting point, but we can imagine a long journey to Jerusalem. We are preparing to worship the King (who no longer dwells in the Temple in Jerusalem, but in our hearts), and we must be “clean!”

I’ll pray for you as you pray for us! May we all insert the key that unlocks freedom….God’s forgiveness!

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