Barry Bonds and the Asterisk
A cloud of doubt hangs over home run king Barry Bonds. On August 7, 2007, Bonds hit number 756, the home run that broke Hank Aaron's record. Most of the talk about the new record, though, is whether it really should count, because Bonds is alleged to have used steroids. Sports buffs say if his name goes in the record book it should be accompanied by an asterisk. The asterisk, of course, means that the record is a sort-of record, a footnoted record. The asterisk means the record is tainted.
The asterisk idea didn't go away. Mark Ecko, the man who bought the ball that Bonds hit to set the record, asked baseball fans in an Internet poll what he should do with it. The fans voted for him to brand the baseball with an asterisk and donate it to the baseball Hall of Fame. In the summer of 2008 that's what Ecko did.
Having an asterisk by your name is actually something we all should be able to identify with. Scripture talks about the Book of Life, in which the names of each believer is recorded. With all the sins we have committed in this life, you would expect that each of us would have an asterisk by our name in this all-important Book. Tainted. Don't really belong.
But so great is our justification in Christ, so perfect is his work on the cross, so just is God in justifying you, that in the Book of Life there will be no asterisk by your name. Because of Christ's atoning work on the cross for you, you truly belong in the kingdom of God.
From Preaching Today: Craig Brian Larson