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I live in a world that points their accusing fingers directly at me,  and they are right.

I hear people everyday (and occasionally myself) – pointing fingers at such and such for doing this and that and every time,  when I think about what they are saying, I can remember something similar that I have said or done – and those fingers point directly at me.

I see people talking about others, about the way they talk or act – and I remember something from not that long ago that I said or did myself – and those fingers point right back at me.

You see, I’m all those things that you complain about when you talk about other people in front of me. I can’t deny it,  I’m guilty as charged. I deserve the full weight of your pointing fingers,  your accusations, your judgement,  your condemnation.

I deserve each of you,  pointing at the mountains of evidence, of my life’s examples of falling short,  of my making mistakes,  of my hurting others with my selfish pride and foolishness.

I can hear each of you crying out “Stone him, stone him!” while you are pointing your fingers and words at others – as a cruel trick to hide the true target of your attacks. I can feel the venom of your words sinking deep into my flesh as they batter me and seek to destroy me.

Yes, I know what you will say about me when all is revealed. I can see it in your pointed fingers and accusations. You condemn me to the justice that I deserve for this life of failings and imperfections and weakness. You build up such a convincing case against me.

And I fear how many I have testified against as well with my pointed fingers and words. Even now, even with these words,  do I not toss accusations just to prove a point?

But I have been forgiven. Even in the depths of my shortcomings, I am loved and forgiven. And I forgive you,  friends. I know my guilty evidence,  I do not attempt to make any claims of righteousness of my own works or deeds –

I can only claim the promises of my Lord and King and Savior Jesus Christ –
who has paid the price for my sins, 
who has defeated the clutches of death, 
and who lives in me and is teaching me –
His way, 
His truth, 
and His life.

So I do not point this out to accuse you,  friends. I point this out so that you will know the venom of judgement and accusation and condemnation that is DEATH,

so that you will understand conviction and repentance and salvation that is Hope, 

so that you will know grattitude and freedom and obedience that is Faith,

And so that you can uncover love and forgiveness and mercy that is LIFE.

Let’s lay down our accusations and pick up our cross.

Let’s look past the evidence of others as we remember our own imperfections.

Let’s not follow in the footsteps of Cain,  so eager to murder our brother.

Let’s look to Christ.

I love you.

I forgive you.

Can you forgive even me?

Romans 3:10-18 ESV
as it is written:
“None is righteous, no, not one;  no one understands; no one seeks for God.  All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”  
“Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.”
“The venom of asps is under their lips.”  
“Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”  
“Their feet are swift to shed blood;  in their paths are ruin and misery,  and the way of peace they have not known.”  
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Romans 3:20-24 ESV
For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Romans 4:3-5 ESV
For what does the Scripture say?
“Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.”
Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,