“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came just at the right time and died for sinners… God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”
Romans 5:6-8 (NLT)
The title of today’s devotion may seem like an oxymoron. At face value it looks contradictory yet, as discussed last week, it’s a truth that we should all eventually grasp through faith.
Paul, in the book of Romans, discusses the details of why Jesus had to die for us and why we needed liberating from the law in order to have a right relationship with Christ. He tells the reader that we all have a debt that is owed that was too huge for us to pay (because of the law), but by the grace and free gift of God there is great news; it has been paid by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.
Here in chapter 5 Paul gives an example of what that looks like in reality. He asks two rhetorical questions. Would someone be willing to sacrifice himself for an ok kind of guy? Maybe someone would possibly be willing to give his or her life for a person who is especially good? However, Jesus showed us His great love for us by giving His life in our place while we were still sinners (enemies of God in fact). He didn’t wait for us to get good before He died for us. He died while we were still sinners.
Think about it. Think about the worst thing you have ever done. It is for that memory that Christ died for us. Not only that memory but for so much more. That is true love. Our debt is completely wiped out; we are free to live victorious lives!
It’s unfathomable, yet it’s the truth. Accept it in faith so you can “… have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, high how and how deep His love is.” (Ephesians 3:18)