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Thursday, September 5, 1996

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1 Corinthians 3:18-23
Psalm 24
Luke 5:1-11

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i'm forever grateful

"I am a sinful man." —Luke 5:8

One of the greatest events in our lives is when we realize our sinfulness, when we fall "at the knees of Jesus saying, 'Leave me, Lord. I am a sinful man' " (Lk 5:8). When we experience the fear of the Lord and get in touch with reality, we realize the incompatibility of our sin with God's holiness. So we cry out: "Leave me, Lord!" However, if the Lord leaves us, we will never be freed from sin and will be separated from Him forever. Therefore, Jesus must stay so we can be empowered to leave our sins.

But how can the all-holy God be in the presence of sin? "For our sakes God made Him Who did not know sin, to be sin, so that in Him we might become the very holiness of God" (2 Cor 5:21). When the all-holy God chose not to leave us in our sinfulness, our sin convulsed in His all-holy presence, and we crucified Him. However, sin crucified itself in crucifying Jesus. "God sent His Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin Offering, thereby condemning sin in the flesh" (Rm 8:3). "Now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near through the blood of Christ" (Eph 2:13). "Now Christ has achieved reconciliation for you in His mortal body by dying, so as to present you to God holy, free of reproach and blame" (Col 1:22). Thank You, Jesus crucified!

Prayer:  Father, thank You for loving me so much that You gave Your Son for my salvation (see Jn 3:16).

Promise:  "Let no one delude himself. If any one of you thinks he is wise in a worldly way, he had better become a fool. In that way he will really be wise." —1 Cor 3:18

Praise:  Warren burst into tears of gratitude when praying before a crucifix. That very same day, he shared his conversion testimony for the first time with two other men.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, January 29, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 5, 1996