David Platt urges meditation on scandalous mercy of the cross

David Platt desires that all people be people whose affections have been awakened and provoked, to see and love the grandeur of God.

During the Friday evening session of the 9Marks at Southeastern conference, Platt, who pastors The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham, Ala., asked the gathered pastors and church members to meditate on the glory and grandeur of the Lord.

Looking at Isaiah 6 and later, Isaiah 53, Platt said we can see the holiness of God as Isaiah recognized after the death of King Uzziah, when he saw the true king still seated on the throne.

“We have an incomprehensibly great God,” Platt said. The angels surrounding the throne of God burn for his holiness, he said, continually crying out the only word they could to describe him – “holy.”

Platt said, “For him to be holy does not just mean he is without error. It means he is without equal. May it not be said of any one of us that there is not respect for the author of the universe. He is sovereign over all nature, over all nations and over every single one of our lives.”

God’s holiness is starkly contrasted against our sinfully depraved nature, Platt said. People have a man-centered view of sin, looking at the measure of the sin, rather than recognizing the one who has been sinned against. “If you sin against an infinitely holy God, you are infinitely guilty and deserve infinite destruction.”

However, Platt said we have a scandalously merciful savior, that though his wrath is justly directed at the depraved sinners, instead poured out his wrath on his son.

“On the cross, we see a divine picture of the penalty of sin. But we can’t stop there – the picture here is deeper,” Platt said. “Yes, he will endure the penalty of sin, but in the place of sinners. He did this in our place, for us.”

Platt said there is only one possible response to a God who says, “Your guilt is taken away and your sin is atoned for.”

“Surely this kind of mercy evokes more than raising a hand and praying a prayer. Surely this evokes urgent surrender of our lives – no matter where he calls and no matter how tough it is.”

He said this involvement in ministry and in missions is not because God needs us, but because God loves us. “This sovereign God has chosen to pour out his sovereign grace through his dear son, our Savior, and we are compelled to say, ‘This life and this church you have entrusted to us will be spent for your name’s sake among all peoples.’”

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