Pr. Jaynan Clark
25 January 2012
Blessed Assurance … God’s Grace isn’t Insurance!
I’ve always been irritated by “insurance” … the concept, most of the agents and the basic philosophy that seems to drive the entire enterprise. Not trying to offend any of you who make your living in this way—God knows there are many of you out there—but while it seems to be a “basic necessity” in this fallen world, it does scream out how far the Fall has taken us from the Tree of Life! All the hullaballoo over health care reform only touches on one area of the entire gamut—homeowners, life, car, personal property, malpractice, mortgage, liability, etc. It has become our “protection” from one another.
Insurance seems to deal in the realm of the “what if” and plagues insecure, sinful children of God wandering through the day-to-day. It hoists up upon our shoulders the burden of worrying that we are not prepared, or at least not “covered” in case of an incident, an emergency, or an accident. Who is? False assurance under the auspices of “insurance”, assures you that if you pay enough you will be “protected”. However, when something happens, and it will, then you will have to file a “claim” and if you receive compensation it will put you in the category with those who have realized a “loss.” In other words, you may now need to pay more on your premiums in order to make up for what they had to pay you. What? Did you catch that? You paid for protection and the “insurance” that you are covered in case something happens—but in the event that something does happen then you may, and most likely will, pay more to make up for what you were awarded. I call that a racket.
Juxtapose that concept with the assurance that comes from the promises of God in Jesus the Crucified and Risen One. Blessed assurance of being claimed that is free for you; the ultimate cost for Him. His loss is your gain. His claim is your assurance. Your life is His and that assurance pays out in this life and the next without a single premium or out of pocket expense. Not with silver or gold but by His innocent suffering and death the claim was made.
Lutheran theologians may wiggle and complain when they sing “Blessed assurance Jesus is mine” but take a breath and breathe in the whole of the exchange. You may just be focusing so greatly on the claiming of Jesus alone and the freedom of His grace that you inadvertently lose track of the result of that purchase. Freed and forgiven sinners singing out that because He has paid in full and claimed them (you) as His own, they (you) can boldly sing in the face of Satan himself and all his minions that “Jesus is mine; because He has made me His first!” He is my God, my only Savior and Lord of this life and the next and no paid for insurance this side of the grave will protect me or give me any assurance or rest from my endless wandering, searching and carrying of needless burdens.
Holy and precious blood, innocent suffering and death did not pay for a policy that will weigh claims and losses and threaten to increase the premium cost when you realize needs in your life but rather it assures you protection from sin, death and the power of the devil for free. Blessed assurance that you belong to Him and neither life nor death nor angels nor principalities nor anything else will void that “policy” agreement.
So, preach and teach and deliver the blessed assurance of God to His wandering children and never ever make this a policy that “insures” or an achievable relationship that one can work for, earn or buy. Paid in full, it cost Jesus’ His life. It cost you nothing, though it demands of you everything because it is His life you live now, it is not your own. A life for a life. The cost of discipleship.