Jesus loved us while we were yet sinners
--Part 3 of the God's Love Series
In verse 3 of Proverbs 7, weíre told to "write them [Godís words] on the tablet of your heart."
There is a difference between getting them in your head and writing them on your heart. By writing
them "on your heart," you will be able to walk in the truths contained within the verses.
Romans 5:8"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
The verse above makes a direct association between three things:
(1) Godís love for us
(2) Christ died for us
(3) our sinful state while He died for us
The phrase "unconditional love" has become so common, especially in Christian environments, that is may be necessary to go back and evaluate just what it means. If we can get, I mean really get, what it means to be unconditionally loved by God, we will find peace, joy and freedom like weíve never imagined. One of the enemyís most effective plans is to keep us from this, so that we will be too busy looking over our shoulder waiting for lightning to strike us for our latest failure that we wonít have our eyes on the One who loves us.
Getting ourselves straight in order to receive His loveImagine this verse: "For God so loved the world, that once they straightened out their behavior, He sent his only begotten Son . . . " The bible doesn't say anything of the sort, does it? God sent His Son, and His Son died for us, while we were yet sinners!
Romans 3:23 tells us that we have all sinned and fallen short of glory of God. All of us. This means that Godís love, mentioned in Romans 5:8 above, is for all of us. It isnít just for the "good" people.
Then as well as nowThis applies to us now, as well; though we may be Christians, saved by grace, we still fall short. Some would argue that weíre not technically referred to as sinners anymore, but thatís a fine point. A good verse to look at is Romans 3:3. It says that those who sin (in this case the sin of unbelief) will not nullify the faithfulness of God. You canít make God stop loving you!
Itís important to note here that Christians are not morally superior to non-Christians. It is easy to think of believers as the ďgoodĒ people, but thatís just not the case. In fact, itís because Iím so morally bankrupt that I am a Christian. My failures in this area have shown me that I need a Savior.
Be good for goodness sakeMost American children are familiar with this refrain: "He knows if youíve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake!" Referring to Santa Claus, we are reminded that the gifts we receive are directly tied to our behavior.
The good news is that God is not to be confused with Santa Claus. Godís love for us is not affected by our behavior. For more about the dangers of thinking of Christianity as performance-based, please click here for our Hebrews 6 study.
If you ever start having doubts about Godís love for you, go back and read Romans 3, especially the verses cited above. Read the parable of the Prodigal Son. Look in the mirror and tell yourself, over and over, that you cannot make God stop loving you. He loves you while you are sinning.
NEXT: Part 4--He Gave Us His Word
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