Knowing God’s Love Need Not Be Difficult
I can easily believe that the atom-holding, earth-spinning, galaxy-sustaining, life-giving Source of everything wonderful can do whatever He likes. Even the devil believes God’s power. My difficulty is believing that God’s special love for me makes Him long to use that power on my behalf. Who am I that I should deserve this kind of treatment, especially after doing the “raunchy” things that I do.
A weakness in our denial is believing that God would do these things for ordinary people. If we believe in scripture, Jesus ministered to the sick of heart, the poor, the criminals, the fornicators, and generally the low-life.
In Ephesians 3:18-19, Paul writes, “I pray that you may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”
I know, we feel battered by guilt feelings, but surely you must know that Jesus himself, suffered temptation, so none of us would suffer condemnation, feeling unforgivable, being hounded by strong guilt feelings, fearing we’ll end up in hell, or feeling unable to forgive ourselves. But, we must ask. Forgiveness is offered but never forced upon us. That is our decision, our choice.
As much as we might like, we can’t forgive the sins of others. notice that I said the sins of others. We are instructed that “we love the sinner but hate the sin.” Of course, if we continue, or refuse, or to give up our addictions we will be prevented to from loving our neighbor.
An example: Suppose someone is proven guilty of reckless driving. No matter how much the judge likes the person, he must declare the law-breaker guilty and fine him appropriately. It is quite legal, however, for the judge to offer to pay the fine out of the judge’s own pocket. This is what Jesus did on the cross. It is then up to the offender whether he accepts the judge’s gift or not.