| || |The Berean Expositor
Volume 33 - Page 110 of 253 Index | Zoom | |
"We are his workmanship" (poiema, "making") said the Apostle to the Ephesians,
where salvation by grace; salvation not of works; salvation that leads to "all lowliness of
mind", is the parallel experience.
"GIVE ME."--Here we have a picture of man assuming responsibility, attempting to
shape his own destiny and making utter failure of the effort.
"MAKE ME."--Here is repentance or "a change of mind" indeed. Man at last turns
to God, in Whom alone can he hope to find the full realization of the purpose of his own
"He wasted his substance with riotous living" (Luke 15: 13).
pp. 42, 43
The Lord, to Whom all things belong, abhors waste. He Who fed 5,000 by
miraculously multiplying a few loaves and fishes, and Who could, and did, feed them
again in a similar manner, nevertheless commanded that the fragments be gathered up
that nothing be wasted.
Sin is not only a crime, a transgression, an offence, it is a dismal waste. In the
Hebrew Scriptures the meaning of the basic word for "sin" is not disobedience, or
transgression, or villainy, but "to miss", as an archer misses his mark. Man has sadly
failed. He has missed the purpose of his being; he has "wasted" his essence, his being,
his substance. In usage the word asotos, "riotous", indicates profligacy and excess, but
etymologically it means one who is outside the pale of salvation, a being the negative and
sozo, "to save".
Man, like the prodigal, has taken himself into a far country, beyond the preserving and
restraining power of grace, and his end is beggary.
If, ignoring chapter divisions, we pass straight on into Luke 16:, we shall read of
another Waster. This time it is a "steward", not a "son", and this time it is the Master's
goods that are wasted, not his own.
The figure of the elder brother is now changed to that of a steward. The self-righteous
among the Jews had condemned their fallen brethren because they had wasted their
substance in riotous living. But the Lord suddenly charges them with much more
dishonourable act of wasting that which was not theirs but which had been entrusted to
them. The Apostle Paul does the same thing in Rom. 2: He knew his Jewish readers
would have agreed that the Gentiles were "without excuse" (Rom. 1: 20), but they must
have been astonished as he brought against them the charge:--