But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 ESV
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5 ESV
Think about this for a moment…. GOD became flesh and died …. then rose from the dead, conquering death. Why? Answer…. Love. Couldn’t God have just as easily snuffed out Adam and Eve and started over? People ask me all the time, “if God is so good why doesn’t he do something about the world’s condition?” and I think ……. He did…. BUT GOD shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 ESV The question becomes, “why do we expect things to be different or better in this world if we don’t follow his teachings and commandments?” We can look at others all day and question the reasons they are doing this and that, but we cannot control them, nor should we want to…. we can only control our own choices. When I think about what would have happened to me if God had not intervened in my life, it causes me to love him more. What would have happened, You asked? I would have died unforgiven of my sin. BUT GOD did not let that happen because of his mercy, love, and grace.
BUT GOD’S MERCY
Rich in mercy- that describes one of God’s many attributes. His mercy covered all the consequences of my sins and for that I am grateful. I will not blame him for the failures in my life nor in the lives of others. He, in mercy, did not give me what I truly deserved, but instead he gave me life. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! ACCORDING TO HIS GREAT MERCY, he has cause us to be born again to a living hope through resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. 1 Peter 1:3 ESV Oh Lord, that more people could see their need for the gospel… the good news of the mercy of God.
BUT GOD’S LOVE
God has shown his love for us by doing something for the world far greater than many may ever see or understand. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 ESV ….. For one would scarcely die for a righteous person— though perhaps for a good person one would dare even die—BUT GOD showed his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 ESV…… Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 ESV This last Bible verse reminds me of a verse of a precious hymn, “What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bare, and what a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.” (Joseph M Scriven)
BUT GOD’S GRACE
Grace, just as we sing in the song, is truly amazing. It was grace that taught my heart to fear and grace my fears relieved. It is by grace that we are able to see our sin and then understand that sin caused death; and without God’s forgiveness, we will be judged for/in our sins. (This is what we are ‘taught to fear’). When we look at the righteous requirements of the law in order to be justified before God, many words come to mind…. overwhelming, impossible, no hope, doomed, frustrated, and on this list of words could go. To be justified by the law would mean a person would have to keep the law perfectly, not breaking even one of the laws of God. For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it. James 2: 10 ESV
BUT GOD, by grace, made it possible for us to be forgiven of all sin and live justified before him. ( just- as- if-I’d- never- sinned)… (And grace my fears relieved.) This is NOT cheap grace, for it is grace made possible by the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross. Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. Hebrews 9:22b ESV (Hymn)…. Jesus paid it all, all to him I owe, sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow. ( Elvina M. Hall 1865)
As a Christian, reflect this week upon the fact that if it were not for the …BUT GOD… experiences in your life, you would be without hope. You would have no testimony of the mercy, love, and grace of God in your life. Enjoy this time of reflection with such precious songs as ….Amazing Grace…. What A Friend We Have In Jesus….. and…. Jesus Paid It All. Give him the worship he is more than due….. To God Be The Glory ….. another great hymn you can sing.
If you are not a Christian, seek Him in the mist of whatever storm or life experiences that are happening in your life. He may not calm the storm, but He will go through it with you. Please understand that unless there is a BUT GOD moment in your life, all the above will be a moot point when you stand before him one day. The gospel is the good news that Jesus came and did all the above for you so that YOU can experience BUT GOD.
Because of His Grace ~ Pastor David