Well, I'm happy to report to you that I have no personal problem with the paparazzi. Those celebrity photographers have been very respectful of my privacy. In fact, they could care less about anything I do. But, in reality, these freelance celebrity photographers have been the object of some bigtime criticism - most vehemently after their pursuit of Princess Diana may have contributed to the circumstances of her tragic death. Their prying lenses seem to be everywhere, trying to capture a picture of someone famous doing something outrageous, something sensational, something lurid. And, unfortunately, the personal lifestyles of a lot of people provide those kinds of things to shoot. Of course, when it comes to our lives, we want privacy - no intrusive cameras capturing moments we would rather not have everyone know about. There aren't many people, frankly, who could afford to have a camera capturing everything they do.
Well, I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Inescapable Camera."
Actually, there is such a "camera" trained on your life at all times. In the Bible in Psalm 139, one man says, "O Lord, You have searched me and You know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; You perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down." Then the sobering bottom line - written by a spiritual leader who thought no one knew about his secret act of adultery - "You are familiar with all my ways." David learned that there is nothing we do that is missed - or forgotten - by God.
Solomon put it this way - "A man's ways are in full view of the Lord" (Proverbs 5:21) It is obvious from what God says He knows about you and me that there is no such thing as getting away with any sin. Sooner or later, we will face it head on - with all its consequences. In fact, God puts it this way - "Be sure your sin will find you out" (Numbers 32:23). You might say, "Well, it hasn't yet." Key word: yet. Judgment delayed is not judgment canceled.
Some of the most liberating words in the world are these - "nothing to hide." It is so great to be able to live in such a way that it doesn't matter what someone overhears, films, tapes, discovers - to live without worrying about what's coming up behind you in your rear view mirror. When you live with integrity, you have no fear of discovery. And that is freedom!
But it is very sobering to face the fact that God's eternal judgment is going to be based on His total knowledge of everything we've ever thought, ever said, ever done. There will be no secrets on judgment day. The picture God will show on the screen that day will include everything - everything. For a lot of us, the accumulated guilt of a lifetime of sins is, if we will acknowledge it, an almost crushing weight. It would appear we don't stand a chance with a holy God - not after all we've done.
But, thank God, there is a way to have that tell-all film destroyed once and for all. Imagine being free of that guilt, of that shame, of the eternal punishment that sin calls for - of knowing that the gates of heaven will be flung wide open for you when you die. It can happen to you. Word for today from the Word of God - Acts 10:43 - "Everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins through His Name." God's wonderful promise to everyone who has been to Jesus' cross to have their sins forever forgiven - "I will forgive their wickedness and I will remember their sins no more' (Hebrews 8:12). If you want God to forget every sin you've ever done, get to Jesus today.
If God's all-knowing picture of your sin is there when you die, there is no way He can let you into His heaven. But that picture can be destroyed today - if you reach out to Jesus trust Him to be your Savior.
To think that Jesus absorbed all the guilt and all the hell of all those sins when He died on the cross - that is overwhelming love. He waits right now to pour out that love on you.