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Kung Fu Lion

By Pastor Phillip Howle
web posted November 11, 2014

RELIGION – I fancy myself a tough guy. In writing that sentence, I just realized that tough guys don’t use the word fancy much in conversation. But none the less, I press on. I lift weights, run, and often beat a punching bag in my garage senseless. I played football and wrestled in high school. I am someone you would be wise not to mess with! I pretty much ooze intimidation to all who see me! However, I am not as tough or dumb as a guy I read about this past week.
The story was about Ellie Quo, a thirty-two-year-old Australian man who decided to put his fighting skills to the ultimate test. In the spring of 1989, after being told by his Kung Fu instructor that he had reached a level where he could kill wild animals with his bare hands, the impressionable student decided it was time to take on the most lethal predator.

He snuck into the Melbourne Zoo at night and scaled the lion enclosure. He was confident he would kill the beast before him with his Kung Fu chop! But rather than doing battle with one lion, he faced several. Sadly, the unfair fight ended with predictable results, and zookeepers found Quo (or what was left of him) the next morning.

Of course this bizarre story makes you question Quo’s sanity. How could anyone, regardless of their mad Kung Fu training, hope to take on a lion, much less a whole pride? But here is my thought for us; is it not more arrogant and dumb to take on the creator God of the universe? You may say, I ain’t picking a fight with God. True, you might not be trying to go mano a mano with God. But we do live in rebellion to God.

Jesus says in Luke 6:46 “Why do you call me 'Lord, Lord,' and not do what I tell you?
We have tried to neuter God as much as possible over the last 50 years. We do not hear much of God’s wrath anymore. Wrath is defined as “the emotional response to perceived wrong and injustice,” often translated as “anger,” “indignation,” “vexation,” or “irritation.” You may say well God has no reason to be mad and all wrathful towards me.

Why is God justified in having wrath toward you if you have not come to Christ on His terms?

1. Because you are a sinner by nature (Eph. 2:3; Rom. 3:10; Ps. 51:5).
2. Because you have amassed a huge volume of sins.
3. Because you have committed the greatest crime possible, against the highest existing authority (Mk. 12:30).
4. Because of your persistence in sinning against God.
5. Because you have spurned the greatest love gift ever, Jesus Christ.
6. Because you have spurned this gift even though you have knowledge of Christ and the way of salvation (Mt. 11:21-24).
7. Because you have been unwilling to admit your desperate need (Jn. 9:39-40).
8. Because you have been proud of your good works, though dependence on them condemns you (Gal. 2:21; Eph. 2:8-9; Gal. 5:4).
9. Because you have not repented even though He has been kind to you (Rom. 2:4-5).
10. Because for some of you, you have stubbornly refused to yield to God and His way of salvation in Jesus Christ even up to this very moment of your life.

Ray Ortlund writes that “The good news of the gospel begins with some really bad news. Our sins only provoke a bigger problem: the wrath of God. Our real problem is not our sins but God. He is angry, He isn’t going away, and there is nothing we can do about it. If God is against us, who can be for us? But here is the good news. God has made God our salvation. He did it at the cross. God has provided a way of escape from God: in God. We run from His wrath by running toward His grace in Christ. And if God is for us, who can be against us?”
So today will you persist in facing God on your own terms? Many a person has told me as they were facing death after I share the Gospel with them on their death bed, that “God and I will work it out when I see Him.” You don’t work it out with God in the life to come. You don’t set the terms of the relationship, He does. God will give you whatever you want! You want to face Him on your own terms and good deeds, you will have that and you will suffer for eternity because of your hubris.

So today, right now, you can realize there is one path to salvation and that is through Jesus Christ. Don’t face God on your own, that is far dumber than our ill fated Kung Fu loving friend above!

Pastor Phillip

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