Because of sin, we don’t find ultimate joy

Published 9:07 am Tuesday, December 27, 2022

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: I don’t think much about what I don’t have until Christmastime. When I go to other people’s homes and see what they have, I suddenly feel cheated that I don’t have all the things that are impressive. At the same time, I am amazed that so many of these people are still discontent. — C.S.

Dear C.S.: If money, possessions, and power could bring fulfillment, the wealthy and powerful people would seldom experience life crumbling. All people — rich or poor — have something in common; we’ve violated God’s laws. The resulting alienation leaves us empty and unfulfilled until we find true contentment.
The Bible tells about a man who served as a great general in the Syrian armies. Naaman had become successful and had everything to live for. But he was struck with leprosy, a condition that brought physical disfigurement, social rejection, mental depression, and death.
Naaman is a picture of all of us. His leprosy is a picture of sin in our lives — a fatal condition that overshadows all successes and accomplishments. That shadow of death hangs over every one of us. Just as leprosy separated people from society, the Bible teaches that sin separates us from God.
The Bible says all of us have sinned (see Romans 3:23). We have a disease that’s constantly eating away at us and has destroyed our relationship with God. That’s the reason we can’t find fulfillment in life. That’s the reason we can’t find peace and joy and happiness in life. We search for it, but because of sin, we don’t find ultimate joy.
What did Naaman do? He realized his need and his helplessness and turned to God. What seemed ridiculous to him he did by faith (see 2 Kings 5). Look to the Lord and be saved (see Isaiah 45:22).
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(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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