The Word: The power to change our world

Published 4:51 pm Friday, February 24, 2023

This morning there were two more mass shootings and the news anchor lamented that we can’t seem to fix this problem – nothing ever changes. They’re right of course. People have been killing each other since Cain killed Abel in Genesis 4. 

Perhaps we haven’t been able to change anything because the root cause goes all the way back to the sinful human nature we inherited from our parents and until we do something about the sin at war in our hearts we won’t see change. In other words, we’re trying to tackle a huge problem with small solutions. That’s like asking a child to move a boulder and then being disappointed that nothing changed. Change is possible! Just ask a friend with a front loader to come and move it. We need a solution bigger than our problem. 

The sin that you and I struggle with is too big for us to handle. But not for our friend with a front loader. “For our sake (God the Father) made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21). God sends Jesus to take all of our sins and pay the price for them upon the cross. The change is dramatic. Jesus who knew no sin became sin. 

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You and I who were sinful become the righteousness of God. Listen as God describes the profound nature of that change. “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses.” (Colossians 2:13) That’s an incredible change! From dead to alive, from dark to light (Ephesians 5:8) and from lost to found (Luke 15:32), God effects incredible change. This change in how God sees us is immediate the moment God gives us faith that His son died for our sins.

But God’s not done! Spending time in God’s presence changes us in more ways than one. “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.” (2 Corinthians 3:18). 

After the veil has been removed from our face (God brings us to faith) we watch in awe as that front loader (Jesus) takes away our sins day after day. We encounter the glory of the Lord as we read our Bibles, celebrate our baptism and go to the Lord’s Supper and that glory changes the way we love the Lord and the way we love our neighbors. In the presence of an almighty God we are changed so that the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) is present in our life. So if you want to change the world, spend some time with the Almighty!

Rev. Matthew Sorenson is the pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church. He can be reached at