All the Riches of His Love
Hello, this is Pastor Don Willeman of Christ Redeemer Church. Welcome to The Kingdom Perspective.
The problem with the gospel of Jesus Christ is that it brings us both the worst news we could ever receive and the best.
First the bad news. The apostle Paul sums it up this way: We are dead in our sin (Ephesians 2:1). By “dead” he does not mean that we are inactive. No. Rather, in the context he means that we are born into a human race that is cut off from the life of God. Therefore, our manner of life is an offense to God. We follow the path of the devil, pleasing ourselves and not God (Ephesians 2:2-3). We are “by nature deserving of [God’s] wrath” (Ephesians 2:3). Now, what could possibly be worse than to be told you are on the wrong side of ultimate and eternal justice? This is the unbelievably bad news.
But, the gospel doesn’t stop there.
Secondly, the gospel then tells us unbelievably good news. Allow me to quote from Ephesians 2. No one has ever said it better:
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 NIV)
This is an amazing truth! But the gospel doesn’t stop there. It is not enough for God to spare us from eternal judgment. He then pours out upon us His own eternal riches. Listen:
And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, [Why? In order to remind us forever of our failure? No!] in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
My friend, the problem with the gospel of Jesus is not that it is too negative. The problem is that it is too good to be true. But it is true!
Something to think about from The Kingdom Perspective.
“And you were dead in your offenses and sins, in which you previously walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all previously lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our wrongdoings, 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 ages to come He might show the boundless riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”
~ Ephesians 2:1-9 (NASB)