Coach Dave Daubenmire
March 6, 2014
A group of my friends took a journey a few years ago. They walked across America.
You read that right. They actually walked across America as a message to the American Church. It took them three months to pound the pavement from California to Washington, DC.
It was a prophetic message to awaken the hearts of America to the scourge of pre-born child murder. The journey ended at the steps of the offices of the Supreme Court of the United States. In 1973 that Court issued the most dastardly, demonically inspired, decision in the history of the United States.
On their parade across the fruited plain they included a horse named Judgment, a white mule named Mercy, a broken set of the Ten Commandments, and a casket bearing the body of an actual aborted baby named Malachi.
A White Mule is rare. In fact, it used to be seen as a sign of nobility. Those who rode on white mules spoke of God's mercy and judgment. "Speak, you who ride on white donkeys, Who sit in judges attire, And who walk along the road." Judges 5:10
Not really being experts in animal behavior the marchers set up an order for the march which included Rusty leading the mule Mercy, followed by the 10 Commandments, the baby Malachi, with Flip, leading the horse Judgment, bringing up the rear.
The first few days of the journey were very difficult because the white mule was not very co-operative. His bullheadedness made him almost impossible to lead. One evening Rusty sat down in disgust and prayed to the Lord for help, knowing that the 3000 mile journey would be impossible with the mule being so uncooperative.
As Rusty sat there in prayer he noticed the blankets hanging on the clothes line with the words Mercy and Judgment imprinted on them. An epiphany stuck him and he realized why the journey was so difficult.
“We've got it backwards,” Rusty ran and told his friend Flip. “We have to put the horse before the donkey. Judgment always comes before Mercy. We have been putting Mercy before Judgment. I believe the Lord is telling us to switch the order so that it falls in line with His order.”
James 2:12-13 “So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty. For he shall have judgment with no mercy that hath showed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.”
Once Rusty and Flip corrected the order of the animals the rest of the journey was much more orderly. Mercy always follows Judgment. By putting Mercy in front of Judgment they were putting the cart before the horse.
Mercy follows Judgment. That is something that modern churchianity needs to learn.
I am convinced that our churches are filled with false converts. It is not their fault, but rather the results of an out-of-order Gospel message. Just like Rusty and Flip learned on the walk across America, putting Mercy in front of Judgment does not work. That is not what the Gospel teaches.
“What are you saying, Coach?” I hear what you are thinking. Let me ask you a question.
Can you be forgiven for something you didn't know that you did? Will you take an antibiotic before you know you are sick? Do you pay for a meal before you get the bill? In a court of law does the judge give you a suspended sentence before he finds you guilty? Of course not.
Judgment must always come before mercy.
But the church has the cart before the horse....er the mercy before the judgment. That is why the Gospel has become so powerless in the lives of so many.
Stop a minute and think about the common “altar call” that is prevalent in most of America's churches. They are, for the most part, focused on life-enhancement rather than sin and redemption.
Listen closely to the next service that you attend where an “altar call” is given and the opportunity to “come to Christ” is offered by the minister. If you listen closely you will hear the message is not so much about sin and redemption but focused more on what Jesus can do FOR you. You will hear phrases such as:
He will take all of your cares.
• He will be a friend that sticks closer than a brother.
• He will be the Father that you never had.
• He will give you a brand new life.
• He will give you a hope and a future.
• All you need to do is “accept” Jesus.
Now most of those phrases are true, but they are a by-product of salvation and should not be the focus of “coming to Christ.” All of those phrases are examples of mercy...benefits if you will...of “accepting Jesus.”
The focus of the Gospel should be Salvation. Salvation...saved...but saved from what? A lousy life? Nope. From “the wrath of God” that abides on the sinner. Salvation saves one from death, hell, and the grave and leads to ETERNAL life...not a better life. Most churches are putting the cart before the horse.
Mercy follows Judgment. Perhaps we need to ask ourselves “what is judgment?”
According to the dictionary judgment is “to form an opinion after careful thought.” The idea that Christians are “not supposed to judge” is erroneous. Judging is essential to determining right and wrong, good and evil. That's why mercy can only follow judgment.
To be found guilty means “ to feel responsible for having done something that is wrong.” God has judged us guilty and we stand in a position where punishment is required. All of us have...do...deserve punishment.
“For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” “The wages of sin is death.” “The Soul that sins it shall die.”
John 3:28 “He that believeth on the Son has eternal life: And he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”
The wrath of God...that is what we are saved from...not the miserable life that we are living. God has proclaimed us guilty and deserving of wrath. Salvation declares that we agree with God that we are guilty...JUDGMENT. Only then, after the guilty verdict...is mercy available to us. Mercy can only follow judgment.
But what is it we are hearing all across America today? “Don't judge. Who are you to judge? Tolerate. Accept. Ignore sin. Love.”
My friends, that is the cart before the horse...mercy before judgment. Most Christians don't even know what they are saved FROM.
Mercy before judgment gives us the false impression that Jesus winks at sin. That is why our churches are full of people who live together outside of marriage. “Christians” who steal from their employers and lie to their boss. “Christians” who “love sinners” more than they hate the sin. “Christians” who think it is OK to seek first the things of the world. “Christians” who do not understand that Christ called us to die to ourselves. “Christians” who use their walk to the altar as a get-out-of-hell-free card.
A judgment-free salvation leads to a cross-less Christ. Jesus died to overcome sin...not to make it more palatable.
Can you imagine going to a Dr. for a check-up only to hear the Dr. tell you that you have a life-threatening disease? I wonder how many of you would turn to your Dr. and say;
“Why are you so judgmental, Doc? You diagnosis is hateful and insensitive.”
Or would you get on your knees and beg the Dr. for the cure.
“Please Doc, help me. What can I do to keep this disease from killing me?”
That is what the true-Gospel does. It doesn't just enhance your life...it saves your life.
The wrath of God is abiding on all a lot of folks. But no one will tell them. No one wants to hurt their feelings. No one wants to diagnose their fatal illness. We are loving them all the way to hell.
Mercy requires judgment. Judgment is not a four letter word.
Do you punish your children when they get out of line or do you let them slosh around in their filth? Do you point out that some behaviors are good and some are bad? Don't you train them today to prevent problems later?
Judgment is the most loving thing you can do for a friend. Mercy follows judgment.
It is time to get the horse back in front of the cart.
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