I went on my final hunt of the season to Mosquito Lagoon. We went into one of the impoundments and to the back side of one of the islands. As soon as shooting was legal we had a group of 3 or 4 birds flyover. My friend shot one and it landed behind us in about three feet of that dark gray salt marsh muck that sucks your boots right off. The dog did not see the bird down and when I sent him he went the wrong way. So I walked back to where the bird went down to retrieve it. The mud went from the surface of the water almost to the top of my hip waders. As I was walking I lost my balance and fell. Some how in the fall my ankles got crossed and I could not get up. Needless to say in the struggle my gun filled with muck. My friend came over and lent a hand. I pulled my waders off and struggled over to the dead bird. I got my gun clean enough to enjoy the rest of the hunt.
Many times we see our self as a gun full of mud, but once I get cleaned up I will be able to shot and things will be good. Other times we see ourselves stuck in the muck up to our knees and all we need is a little help. The Bible is clear, without Jesus’ righteousness we are not like the gun or stuck up to our knees. We are like the duck shot dead in our sins. Ephesians 2:1-3 says “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.” What can a dead duck or a dead man do for that matter? Nothing, we can’t clean ourselves up, we can’t wiggle our way out of the muck, and all we can do is rot in our sin.
Romans 8:9-11 states “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” Our salvation is not based on our good works, or efforts to clean up our act. Our salvation is because of Jesus’ righteousness makes us alive.
I Peter 1:3-9 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”