A Deadly Foreign Substance

 •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 6
I was in fine shape—at least, so I thought. For some time I had traveled on government business more than one thousand miles per week. Thus I had an excusable pride in my physical ability to withstand the strain.
How like that is to the spiritual condition of many people! They look well. They are pleased with themselves, they are admired in the world and especially in the churches. They are honored by those who know and participate in their good deeds. They are doing their bit, as they think, in the great battle of life, and hope for ultimate victory in an entrance through the pearly gates.
But all unsuspected by me during this period there was forming in my body a foreign substance which was soon to lay me low. One morning on getting up to resume my journeyings I was seized by severe internal pains. Our family physician was called in. He was puzzled, and brought out a specialist from a nearby city. Together they took me to be x-rayed. Then my body which outwardly made such a good appearance was examined as it really was, and the x-ray photograph exposed sternly but truthfully the true state. A foreign substance was there. Furthermore, if not immediately removed, it would ere long cause a lingering and painful death.
Friends, you who outwardly are irreproachable, but inwardly are lost, ruined, and undone, what a terrible condition would be revealed in you if examined under heaven's x-rays! A cancerous foreign substance will also be found. That foreign substance is Sin, and unless it is put away it will sooner or later end in eternal death.
The entrance of sin is clearly shown in the Scriptures. "By one man sin entered into the world." Rom. 5: 12.
Not only does it enter into the degraded and low, but into ALL, for "all have sinned." Rom. 3:2323For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (Romans 3:23). An unflattering photograph it is indeed, but an examination of ourselves by God's standard convinces us of its correctness. "There is none righteous, no, not one." Rom. 3:1010As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (Romans 3:10).
But my X-ray photograph was not taken to show how bad things were. Its purpose was to guide the physicians to the proper remedy. So is it also with the photograph in God's Word. It is not given to insult us or to merely make us disgusted with ourselves; it is given to make us realize our need of Christ who alone can put away sin. God has no pleasure in the death of the wicked. His desire is that all should come to Him for life.
"'When we were without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly." Rom. 5:66For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. (Romans 5:6).
Our sin demanded God's wrath and judgment, but the Lord Jesus bore our sins on the cross, being made a curse for us. Since He has suffered in our stead, the Just for the unjust, we may by believing in Him have all our sins put away by the precious blood which "cleanseth from all sin."