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The Scandal at Penn State & The Gospel November 11, 2011

Posted by pastorsbc1303 in Uncategorized.
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This past week the sports world has been rocked by the story out of Penn State in which a long time staff member has been accused of sexually molesting several young boys over the course of many years.  That is horrific enough, but on top of that is the fact that the legendary coach of Penn State Joe Paterno was fired from his job because he knew about the situation and did not go above and beyond legal requirements to make sure these acts were stopped.

As I have been keeping up with this story over the last few days there have been some people who are just completely amazed that such a “good” “legendary” man such as Joe Paterno could get caught up in such an incident.  This is a man who has talked of the importance of character and was always considered to be one of the coaches who did it the right way in the midst of the cesspool of college athletics.

At first my reaction was similar.  How could a guy that has been doing things right for so long end up in the middle of this?  But over the last couple days as I have been able to think through things I have begun to realize that this is not a new or surprising story at all.  In fact, it is the story of man since the Fall.  Men are sinful beings that left on their own cannot do good.  The Old Testament is full of stories that illustrate this.   The best of the best in the Old Testament could not measure up.  Moses could not do it.  King David, a man after God’s own heart could not do it.  Solomon the wisest man to walk the earth could not do it.  The list could go on and on.

Thankfully, God intervened.  God knew man could not do it on their own, and therefore the lives of all those Old Testament people who could not accomplish it points us to one clear and decisive point–Jesus Christ is the only way.  Moses needed Christ.  King David needed Christ.  Solomon needed Christ. Joe Paterno needs Christ.  You and I need Christ.  He truly is the only way, the only truth, and the only life.

So how should we respond to such a story today?  We mourn and grieve for the lives of those precious children that were hurt. We pray that God will touch their lives and hearts with his grace and mercy.  We pray for God’s justice to be displayed both here on earth and for eternity.  And finally, we rejoice in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  When we see stories of such great sin it should remind us of how great a sinner we are and lead us to our knees in praise to Jesus Christ who died on the Christ in our place to make atonement for our sins!