Faith

Even When

Sin is this nasty, ugly, despicable horror that we all have to fight. Every day is a constant battle against sin and the powers of Satan and his minions. More often than not, we lose.

Luther nailed it (funny, right?) when he labeled us as sinners and saints at the same time. Every day we sin, but we remain forgiven saints of God. God, in his abundant mercy, forgives us all our sins.

How hard of a concept is that for you to accept? I know I struggle with it. I’m not a perfect person. I’m no where near being a perfect person. How am I to believe that even though my life is full of sin, I get to call myself a saint? Not only that, but God himself calls me a saint. And even though it makes no sense to me, I can’t argue with him. He kind of ranks above me.

I’ve recently been focusing on Ephesians in my daily devotions. I find that book jam packed with brilliant stuff (as most books of the Bible are). The verses I’ve chosen to really study, really focus on, and really take to heart are found in chapter two:

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— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God. . .

See what I mean by jam packed?

In those verses, you’ll find my theme for this post, Even When (verse 5). 

God saw us, dead to sin, wickedness, and walking in the course of disobedience, and yet he chose us. He chose us and brought us back to life. He chose us, redeemed us, and gave us a spot with him in Heaven. That was all before we even had him! Now that we are his people, how much more does he choose us? We were at our absolute worst when he rescued us. What can we do now that would take him away from us?

Nothing.

There is absolutely nothing we can do that would destroy the love he has for us.

This is not to say that we should go on sinning joyfully, because we really shouldn’t do that. Sin is nasty. Sin is ugly. Sin destroys life. But sin in all its power cannot destroy God’s love. I once heard someone say that sin doesn’t turn God away from us, it just hurts him. It’s like when a parent says, “I’m not mad; I’m just disappointed.” How much more effective is that than yelling? That’s what God tells us when we sin. He’s disappointed when we sin. He’s hurt when we sin. He’s sad when we sin. But he loves us. Nothing can take that away.

Even when we slip again into that same pattern of sin, whether it be gossip, hatred, addiction, coveting, stealing, deceit, etc., God chooses us. Even when we turn our backs on him, and go our own way, God loves us. Even when.

Satan is powerful and mean. He likes to convince us that God hates us. He likes to tell us that we’ve ruined our salvation because we did x, y, and z or because we didn’t do a, b, and c. He likes to let us know that we’re just sinners and can never be saints. But God is more powerful, and he tells us otherwise. 

Today, listen to that voice of God instead of the voice of Satan. Remind yourself as you’re fighting against sin of the hurt it will cause the God who loves you. Let that reminder protect you against sin. And when you fall, remember that God chose you even when you were dead in sin. Remember that God loves you and that nothing can change that.

Remember that you are God’s. Even when.

 

Image taken from Biblia.comEphesians 2:4-5.”

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