In 1 John 4:9-10 the Bible says “In this the love of God was revealed in us, because God sent His only begotten Son into the world that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation concerning our sins.” This was done as an act of his unconditional love for us.
We have a debt to pay?
In the beginning when God created Adam and Eve, God forbade them to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, he even informed them that the penalty thereof would be death. In Genesis 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” But they were deceived by the serpent, Satan, and they went against God's will and both ate of the tree. The Bible states, “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” James 4:17.
“But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:2 KJV)
“And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:” (Genesis 3:22 KJV)
“So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.” (Genesis 3:24 KJV)
To sum things up:
1. We are all sinners. “All have sinned.” Romans 3:23
2. We are all doomed to die. “The wages of sin is death.” Romans 6:23
3. We cannot save ourselves. “Without me ye can do nothing.” John 15:5
Lets think about this for a moment...
Because of our sins, we are sentenced to death. We cannot pay that penalty without losing eternal life, because if we died for our sins, we could not resurrect ourselves. We would be dead forever. We owe something we cannot pay!
Jesus is going to pay our debt for us?
Let's revisit this scripture: “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (1 John 4:9-10 KJV) How did God's Son do this for us? What did he do to be the propitiation for our sins?
The Bible says “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8 KJV) God, to whom we were disobedient, sent his Son, Jesus Christ, to die for us. Jesus paid our unpayable debt for us at no cost to us! There was no layaway plan, no APR, no annual fees! Jesus did this for us as a gift to us – a free gift to us so that we can again be able to have life everlasting. “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.” (1 John 3:1a KJV) Another clear sign of God's unconditional love for us.
Let's recap. We owed something we could not pay! But then a friend comes along, Jesus, and say, “I'll pay! You will not have to die for your own sins. I will die in your place and give you the credit for it.” All we have to do is accept the offer!
But wait... There's more?
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:” (John 1:12 KJV) All we have to do is openly acknowledge and accept Jesus' death for our sins and we will become a son or daughter of God as well!
Believe these three things and be received!
1. He died for us. “That he... should taste death for every man.” Hebrews 2:9
2. He forgives us. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins.” 1 John 1:9
3. He saves us. “He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” John 6:47
So what's the catch?
God's word has no catch! The only thing we can do is to accept Jesus' sacrifice as a pure gift. All who ask for salvation in faith will receive it. The worst reprobate sinner will be accepted on the same basis as the most moral do-gooder. The past does not count. Remember, God loves everyone alike, and forgiveness is for the asking. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
(Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV)
The Bible says “Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” (Romans 3:28 KJV) “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” (Romans 3:24 KJV)
So what all comes with this free offer?
In addition and at no cost you will receive:
1. Exceeding joy! Jesus said, “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. (John 15:11 KJV)
2. You will be set free: “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. (John 8:36 KJV)
3. Abundant life: “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10b KJV)
Once we accept Jesus into our hearts we are given a new start. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
(2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV) As Christ is received into our hearts, He destroys the old sinful us and actually changes us into a new spiritual creation.
What do I have to do next?
1. Allow Jesus to work through you. After we have accepted Jesus into our heart all we have to do is love him, and allow him to live in us and guide our footsteps. Here is where the greatest miracle of accepting this gift is revealed. There is no forcing ourselves to be or do good anymore! What we do after you have accepted Jesus is the spontaneous out-flowing of another Person's life within us. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
(Galatians 2:20 KJV)
2. Be obedient. Obedience is the natural response of love in our life. Being born of God, as a new creature, we will want to obey Him because His life has become a part of our lives.
If ye love me, keep my commandments. (John 14:15 KJV)
For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
(1 John 5:3 KJV)
But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
(1 John 2:5 KJV)
And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
(1 John 3:22 KJV)
3. Get Baptized. Baptism symbolizes three significant events in the life of the true believer: (1) death to sin, (2) birth to a new life in Christ, and (3) devotion to Christ for eternity.
“Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.”
(Romans 6:4-6 KJV)
As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:
(Colossians 2:6 KJV)
Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen. (Ephesians 6:23-24 KJV)