Grace Communion Church – You Are Included

For Christians and non Christians one of the hardest things to understand is our Creator’s unconditional love.

The immediate response is that if God’s love is unconditional surely I can live however I want. In other words I can sin as much as I want and it makes no difference. Sadly this is a very old argument and one the apostle Paul addressed in the book of Romans, chapters 6, 7 and 8,verses 1 to 17.

As human beings we struggle with the concept of a God, who as Jesus Christ, has already paid our death penalty for sin. We have struggled to understand that, in love, God had to send his only begotten son, Jesus Christ, to lead a completely sinless life on our behalf. Why was that? Because all human beings have sinned as Paul tells us (google Romans 3.23).

Unconditional love is just that. There are no conditions, no special laws you have to keep, nothing you can do to earn salvation. Your future does not depend on you but on what Jesus Christ has already done, for all  humanity, not just for Christians.

gracecommunion-you-are-inclDoes that then give us license to live anyway we like? Well, ‘yes’ and ‘no’. Yes, because most people don’t know they are forgiven, or indeed that they have a Creator … that is why their licence to do as they please usually goes the wrong way. In God’s time all people will eventually know their Creator and know that they have been forgiven, and even then they will still have free-will, but they will use it differently because their inner core, what makes them tick, will be different.  They will be, think and desire what they have become …’born of the Spirit’, not what they are now. One day all people will fully realize the incredible,  unconditional love that underpins the life, death and resurrection of our Creator, Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ …. then we all will want to respond to that love. A part of that response is that we won’t even want to sin, to live in a wrong way, but only be motivated by love, kindness and peace towards others. That in itself is part of the miracle of being born of the Spirit. The difference between a Christian and another is simply that the former has believed and responded now in this life to Christ’s unconditional love.

A Christian will still sin, from time to time, but will consciously strive not to. He or she desires to live in a relationship with God, not with sin. So no genuine Christian, knowing what price has been paid for them, thinks God’s love gives them a license to sin. Nor can they claim any personal credit for their forgiveness or their new desire.

The bible is clear … Christ did everything for us; He died for us while we were still sinners, not after we started living in a special way or  conforming to a higher standard.

Too many people have a wrong concept of God as a fierce, judgemental, harsh being who is just waiting for us to do wrong. A God who sets a standard so high that no human beings can ever attain it. That is a deception or a misunderstanding. Who would want to respond to or worship such a God?

No person, good or bad, is cut off from God’s love. We have a hymn with a line that goes, “ the vilest offender who truly believes, that moment from God a pardon receives.

All humanity is included in God’s love, whether Christian or those of no faith.

The day will come when Christ returns and everyone will have the opportunity to understand and respond to His love and His joy. The good news is, whatever your situation today Christian or not, because God’s love is unconditional,

YOU ARE INCLUDED!

Author: Keith Hartrick, Pastor

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