March 18, 2017 – Saturday
Read: Romans 5:6 – 8
Focus: v. 8
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Someday, when I am a better person, I will start going to church. Someday, when I get rid of all my bad habits, I will feel I can accept Christ as my Savior. Have you ever heard someone say similar things when you brought up the idea of them attending church with you or accepting Christ as their Savior? The idea is that when they get to be a better person then they will turn to God. The problem is that it is impossible to become a better person so you can then be on the same level, spiritually, as God Himself. You can’t, I can’t, and neither can anyone else. It is only God who can place us in that relationship with Him by removing all that prevents us from standing before Him.
Each of my children has expressed to me how they felt they could never measure up and be perfect so they could not become Christians or serve God. Somehow they got the idea that perfection was up to them to achieve BEFORE they could be in God’s presence. They tried but it didn’t work so they gave up. Later on they came to understand that this kind of perfection is not what God is asking of them. He initially just wants us to turn to Him to be our perfection by faith in Jesus Christ His Son.
The Apostle Paul makes it very clear in our scriptures for today that Christ died for the ungodly. We don’t have to wait until WE become perfect to stand in God’s presence. The truth is that’s what Jesus came to do for us. He died for our sins while we were still sinners. The truth is that all the efforts of all who have tried to live perfectly righteous lives by perfectly keeping all of God’s Law have failed and that is part of the purpose of the Law. It is to show us that we can’t do it on our own. Jesus Christ died to make it possible for each of us to come into God’s presence “just as if” (i.e., justified) we were perfectly righteous. We are covered over with Jesus’ “Robe of Righteousness” and that is all God sees. Jesus died to make it so. Our perfection before God is not a perfection of action but rather it is found in the intent of our heart to love and serve God in the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit who enters in when we receive Jesus Christ as our Savior. We can live life the way God intends when we allow His Spirit to be in charge.
While we were still sinners God made this possible. He did not wait until we were somehow “good enough” to stand before Him. Are you still striving to be “good enough” or are you faithfully depending on the finished work of Jesus Christ who died on the Cross for your sins and in reality for the sins of the whole world? Have you recognized that His death is working for you?