Sin and Forgiveness

Since we have a sinful nature, we are not worthy of God's love. We cannot earn it with our righteous deeds; God's love is a gift. When God tells us He loves us, we should accept His love gladly and freely. But are there any strings attached to His love? Do we have any obligation or commitment?

I have found it difficult to understand the concept of how someone is saved. I used to think that a Christian would "glow" and "radiate" Christ's love. That warmth would attract an unsaved person and he would seek it. Then the Christian would glow all over the unsaved person and he would glow, too. Rather naive, wouldn't you say?

What is missing from this picture? The same thing that was once missing from my life: Christ's forgiveness. I am not saying Christ would not forgive me enough. I am saying I didn't admit my sin and ask for His forgiveness enough.

This flaw of mine (sin) casts a whole new light on the matter of how a person is saved, and how we can minister to the unsaved. It isn't enough just to be attracted to Christ's love and to desire it for ourselves. We also have to admit our need for His forgiveness. And we have to demonstrate our desire for His love and forgiveness through a changed life. We have to submit our will to His and turn from our sin.

Remember the song that goes, "Oh, how I love Jesus, because He first loved me!" This statement should be true of our witness to the unsaved. Our message to the world must follow Jesus' example: we are to love others BEFORE they have loved us. And our love for others must be sincere and supportive enough that people can feel comfortable admitting their sin. People need to know that we will not judge them. We will still love and accept them. Just as Jesus does.

But you don't have to take my word for it. Come to Sunday School and learn the lessons of Jesus. These lessons are a vital part of our preparation for serving God. How prepared are you to serve God?

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