This morning in church we looked at one of the most treasured verses in the Bible: "But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:" Romans 5:20b
That says a lot. Here's an example, shortened for time's sake:
One particular Sin City, full of corruption and evil, ignores God, hates God, wants nothing to do with God.
Sin did indeed abound there.
God, in His Mercy and Grace, wants to reach those people, and chooses an evangelist to send...who is the "The Selfish, Hard-necked, Hateful, Prejudiced, Self-righteous Man Of God" in the post title.
This guy, who knows the type of stinkers that live in Sin City, doesn't want them to enjoy the same Grace that God has showered on him. So he takes a bus in the opposite direction, figuring that he can outfox God.
Long story short,(NOBODY outfoxes God!) God gets him to Sin City in spite of himself; the evangelist declares to the Sin Cityites that they are dooooooooommmmmmmeeeeddddddd because of their sin...and he heads out of town to a nearby hill to watch God do His Sodom and Gommorah thing. He wanted to see a tsunami of righteous destruction clean out the burg.
But Grace did much more abound...and that city was saved because they repented and asked God for forgiveness...which did not thrill the evangelist. Like the Grinch on his hill, listening for a ruined Christmas in Whoville, the stubborn, self-righteous evangelist was dissapointed to hear Salvation come to Sin City...and he was bitter towards God for saving those dirty heathens. His heart didn't grow three times larger (which is fine metaphorically, but in the real world would be cause for alarm), and he said to God, "I knew it! You know they deserve Death! Why didn't you take them out?"
"But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:" Romans 5:20b