Date Published: 04 / 19 / 2023 |
There is no condemnation
for those who are in Christ Jesus.
On the night Jesus was arrested and subsequently brought to trial, the Apostle Peter messed up bad. Twice.
First, he attacked the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear. Jesus had to correct him (he also healed the guy!) Second, Peter denied that he even knew Jesus.
A couple weeks later Jesus restored Peter and told him to “feed my sheep.” Jesus knew what Peter would do that night and after he did it, he immediately forgave him and gave him grace. Jesus didn’t say a word about the sins. He didn’t have to, Peter knew and was drowning in guilt. Jesus didn’t see Peter’s transgression as a disqualifier for Christianity or ministry.
He knows we will sin
and he still loves us
and he still has plans for us.
He knew what you would do
when he committed himself to you.
We all fall short. We all make mistakes. We all sin. Sometimes it is on purpose, other times it is an unplanned slip up. We mess up when we are moody, anxious, frustrated, tired and hurt. We forget to pray. We can be selfish, greedy, antagonistic, and flat out disobedient.
Other times we are tempted and tricked by the devil. We see the bait, but not the hook and we bite down to pain and captivity.
We need grace.
Not just a little bit, but far more than we could ever imagine. We need forgiveness as much as we need air to breathe.
The good news of the gospel is
that there is more grace in Christ
than sin in us.
Jesus does not refuse sinners seeking forgiveness.
This is why it is unproductive to beat ourselves up. It doesn’t help us. If anything, it causes us to focus inward, which leads to more sin, more distance from God.
It is the same with the sins of others.
When we shame people, guilt them, and withhold grace, we are actually guilty of a greater sin: the sin of not applying grace to others in the way we want it for ourselves (see the parable of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:21-35).
Now, to be clear, we need to repent (change of mind that leads to a change of actions), but our repentance will never be good enough to atone for our flaws. Not to mention that our repentance is always incomplete and imperfect. We probably only confess 10% of our sins because we are not aware of most of them.
Even our repentance needs repentance.
Our only option is to fall daily into grace.
Over time, grace is what will change us. Our will is not strong enough to overcome its own bondage. What I am trying to say is that we are secure in the love of Christ.
His work for us is enough.
On our good days and bad days,
His grace is enough.
He does not condemn us.
This is freedom! Grace brings freedom and grace teaches us over time what to deny and what to affirm, but even when we feel like we have our act together we still need his grace.
So, enjoy your forgiveness!
There is no condemnation for those who are in Jesus Christ! And if we believe in him we are “in” him. We don’t have to “measure up” because he already did on our behalf. The gospel really is good news for sinners.
Grace and peace,