To this day I remember my exit interview with the president of the bank. I went in to shake his hand, as I’d just accepted a position with another bank in my hometown. I just wanted to thank him for hiring me. He said bluntly he didn’t want to hire me in the first place, and adding insult to injury, he wanted to fire me at least three times. On that pleasant note I set off to self-actualize!
Looking back, while the guy in the paneled office scorned me, there were key officers who promoted me.
In this passage we are told the honest truth about our performance as a religious person, that we were heading out the door before Jesus stood in the way. We were helpless and ungodly, not good or righteous enough, and in fact enemies of the only one who could save us.
Yet in this woeful, sinful, miserable state, Christ died for us, justifying and reconciling us, saving us from the wrath to come.
We’ve heard the saying, “it’ll be over my dead body” this or that happens. In our case, it was over Christ’s dead body that we’ve now received “the reconciliation.”
I think God had me hear those “encouraging words” early in my career to keep me humble and thankful. Here it’s much the same thing. The Lord reminds us that things could’ve been much different without the strong grasp of his saving hand.