ADVENT’S UNSCRUPULOUS INVITATION

ADVENT’S UNSCRUPULOUS INVITATION

First, some dictionary definitions:

“Scruples” –  doubts or hesitation about doing or allowing something because of conscience or principles.  

“Scrupulous” – having scruples; being principled, very conscientious and exacting, strictly honest or honorable.”   

“Unscrupulous” – you guessed it – without moral scruples or qualms of conscience.”

C.S. Lewis once said that God’s grace was “unscrupulous.” 

At first that sounds like God has no scruples, no morals, no standards.  God’s law has all kinds of morals, scruples, standards. They are holy scruples.  We haven’t measured up to them. We never will.   

But we know what Lewis meant when he called God’s grace “unscrupulous.”  He wasn’t talking about the law. He was talking about the gospel. He meant that Christ died for the worst of sinners.  He meant that God wants all people to be saved. He meant that God is not picky about who He invites to the banquet of His pardon in Christ. 

After all, He pardoned King David for his scandals.  He called Matthew the tax collector and Paul the former persecutor to be apostles.  He gave a new start to the woman caught in adultery saying, “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.”  He told about a welcome home party for a prodigal son. He forgave a thief on the cross next to Him – and yes, the rude soldiers who crucified Him. 

It would seem God does not care – that He is unscrupulous about who He invites to the party.  Good thing. That means you and I are invited too. It’s like the old hymn says, “Jesus sinners does receive.”   We call this the gospel, the Good News. It is Advent’s “unscrupulous” invitation.

In “the coming” – in the advent of His only Son, God has extended His unscrupulous invitation of grace to the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, to failures and to the worst of sinners – to you and me.  

A broken and contrite heart, He does not despise.

Those who neither see nor confess their sin, who have no longing to be freed from it, will never appreciate this unscrupulous invitation.  They will forfeit the eternal blessings that could have been theirs.

Through the lens of His love Jesus sees us – and the person sitting next to us – and the person we may not be inclined to look at –  as blood-bought by the great King. Knowing and believing this, we can never be the same!