Exposed

2020-01-26 – Year A – Epiphany 3 – The Rev. Christopher M. Klukas
Amos 3:1-11; Psalm 139:1-18; 1 Corinthians 1:10-17; Matthew 4:12-22

Searched

  • It can be widely assumed that most everything we do online can be tracked.
  • You will know this if you have ever searched for something in a search engine and then you begin to see advertisements for the same kinds of products.
    • Companies can track your purchases, location, and your digital history if you let them. Some think that they will track you even if you don’t let them!
  • If that feels creepy to you, you can take comfort in the fact that there are some things that cannot be tracked: like your thoughts.
  • On the other hand, there is someone who can even track your thoughts, and no it is not Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerburg.
  • God knows everything about you, even your thoughts. Psalm 139:1.
    • He tracks your location, just like your phone – Psalm 139:2-3.
  • King David is the author of this psalm. He knew first hand that there is nothing that can be hidden from God.
    • David committed adultery with Bathsheba, he covered it up by murdering her husband, and he thought he had gotten away with it.
    • God sent Nathan the prophet to bring to light what had been hidden. 2 Samuel 12:9–10
  • We all have things in our lives that we are ashamed of, things that we hope no one will ever know about it. Maybe it is something in your past, or maybe it is something you are struggling with right now. Either way, even if nobody knows. God knows.

Run Away

  • So what do we do, knowing that God knows?
    • One very common response is to run and hide. Remember Adam and Jonah!
    • We might do this by staying away from church (it is God’s house after all).
    • We might avoid our Christian friends (they might see through us and tell on us).
  • Running away from God is like running away from the sun or the moon. Wherever you go, there is it.
    • Psalm 139:7-9
    • We can run away, but God will always pursue us.
  • Perhaps the most dangerous form of running away is digging deeper into sin. You might think of this as embracing darkness.
    • God will come to us, even in our darkest places and moments – Psalm 139:10-11
    • Jesus is the ultimate example of God coming to rescue us even in our darkness.
      • Matthew 4:16 – “The people who walked in darkness”
      • You can see this clearly in the way Jesus spent his time, often with tax collectors and notorious sinners.
      • John 1:4-5 – “The light shines…and the darkness has not overcome it.”

The Scrutiny of Love

  • Wherever you go, however far you run, God will still be there and he still sees you.
  • All of this talk of scrutiny can make us feel uneasy or uncomfortable.
  • We are generally much happier to examine others than we are to examine ourselves or to be examined.
  • The nature of the scrutiny makes a difference
    • When I go to a doctor, the doctor may have a need to see parts of my body that I wouldn’t normally show anyone.
    • It is not comfortable to be examined by the doctor, but I know he is examining me either to heal me or to prevent illness.
    • When God scrutinizes our thoughts and actions, it is with a scrutiny of love.
    • Psalm 139:13-16.
      • Hear the care with which God formed every part of you.
      • God is not searching us out to criticize us or to punish us, he just wants us to come home and to be all that he has created us to be.
      • He wants to lovingly restore us, mending all the parts that have been broken.
  • In the end, we would do well to welcome the scrutiny of God. Psalm 139:23-24.

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