What do you think you deserve? A new car? A pay raise? Maybe a godly significant other? I mean, you’ve worked hard and you try to live life to be a good person. After all that, you deserve some better stuff, right? Shouldn’t God should reward people who try hard to honor him?
The word “deserve” is used ALL the time in today’s society. Transgenders “deserve” to have bathroom rights. Members of the LGBT communites “deserve” to have marriage rights. Americans believe that we “deserve” the freedom we have here. Society will tell you that you “deserve” the perfect life: the expensive car, the high paying job, a perfect soulmate to spend the rest of your life with. People think they “deserve” free college, a higher minimum wage, and more welfare benefits. The list goes on and on. If you’re going through something hard, a friend is likely to say “you deserve better”. I too am guilty of using this phrase. It is so common to hear people talking about how we deserve things that we all view life through this lens of entitlement.
Do we really even know what deserve means? According to Oxford dictionaries, it is to “do something or have or show qualities worthy of (a reaction which rewards or punishes as appropriate)”. When we say we deserve something, we are saying that we are worthy of whatever it is. That we did something good, so we should be able to have something good in return. There isn’t anything wrong with this kind of thinking, right?
Wait a second. Paul says in Romans 7:18 that ” I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out”. Paul says we cannot do any good, even if we want to. Man is unable to do good. Ecclesiastes 7:20 says “surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins”. The Bible says that no one is good, that everyone sins.
If man cannot do good, then we do not deserve anything good in return. Man can only do bad, so we deserve everything bad in return.
We deserve the worst thing ever created, and that is separation from God in an eternal hell.
The only thing that you deserve is hell.
But God, in His awesome and sacrificial grace, has given us a chance to escape what we deserve and receive something that we do not deserve.
God has given us the opportunity to repent and believe and receive eternal life with Him.
Next time you’re about to say something about yourself or someone else deserving something good, just remember that you really don’t.
If you did deserve good things, why would Jesus have had to come and die and be raised to life? If we were able to be righteous on our own, then we would already deserve heaven, and there would have been no point in Jesus coming.
Jesus had to come because God knew that we were seriously messed up and needed help bad.
As Christians, instead of praying for nice things we think we deserve, we should instead thank God for not giving us what we deserve.
Stop saying and believing you deserve good things.