Please bear with me tonight. I sent a Phillips head driver bit through my left index finger today, so typing is definitely an ”effing” adventure. J Other than that, it was a great day!!

I am warming up for this post series about why we do not share the gospel with everyone we meet. Tonight, I’d like to talk about designated hitters. Yeah, I know, what does baseball have to do with the gospel? Only this, I still can’t think of the word I wanted to use, so designated hitter will have to do for now.

When we love our neighbor as our self, what are we doing exactly? Great, more questions, right? I know, I LOVE asking questions.

Well, what are we doing? Love thy neighbor as thyself has always translated for me into loving my neighbor as if he is me, or more specifically, loving him as if I am him. Here is where the designated hitter part becomes a reality. Instead of seeing him, I see me in his place. And, instead of him seeing me, hopefully, he sees himself in my place. Hold on to that for a moment.

Man! Can five Ibuprofen really make you this ditsy? J

Now look at the cross. Jesus is our designated hitter, taking the wrath of God for our sins, for us. He is a stand-in, a scape goat, if you will, to use a word coined in the Old Testament somewhere. (Too looped-up to bother looking that one up. Ask me tomorrow, and I will)

So, we have Jesus, the author of our faith, thus of the gospel, being our designated hitter. To KNOW that well, would mean for us to live it well. Thus, we must become designated hitters for everyone, even the neighbor we never liked. How do we do this? WE don’t.
ow do we do this

Instead of us being in the way in our relationships, and daily interactions, we have another designated hitter, the Holy Spirit, who helps us live this truth of the gospel, and thus share the gospel with people we meet.

I sure do hope this is making sense. I seriously cannot tell.

Now, that raises a good question. In baseball, why does the designated hitter exist? The answer is simple, and I know it all too well. I sure could pitch, but I couldn’t hit to save my life. Most pitchers can’t. How does this tie in with anything?

The reason we have designated hitters, or spiritual scape goats, is because we cannot do with our flesh what we want to do, which is to share the gospel. We can’t know it, we can’t live it, and we can’t share it. It’s not our role, it is the role of Jesus in us to take our place in our lives, literally to live through us, and us through Him, to do anything lasting.

The Holy Spirit is the driving force behind evangelism today, whether it be speaking, doing, or praying, He is the hand that moves the wall. We are the wall. Much of the time we refuse to, or can’t share the gospel, are the times we are instead projecting our flesh onto our neighbor. That isn’t going to draw anyone to Christ.

So reason number two is; our flesh gets in the way. We are all pitchers who think we can also hit sometimes. But the beauty of loving our neighbor is that in order for us to do so, we can’t be there, someone else has to be. If it is us, we will project our flesh, we will project our desires, our wants, ourselves, onto whomever we are with.
We need a designated hitter in order to fulfill the entire Law. That designated hitter is Jesus Christ, one with the Sprit, and now one with us.


Phil Dillon, Prairie Apologist said...

Well said, Tom. You may not have thought you were lucid, but it was very clear exposition. And I beleive it illustrated the point you were making about the Holy Spirit being our designated hitter.

Have a great weekend!

SteveW said...

I said a little prayer for your left index finger bro.....and the rest of you too.