Our Ultimate Source by Danielle Chambers
There’s something deep down in the heart of humans that knows we need a savior, and from the beginning of time the human race has tried to fill that need for saving in every way imaginable.
For the Christian, we know why we so strongly feel the need for a savior. It is because of our own sin nature and the fact that there is absolutely nothing we can do, regardless of how “good” we can be, to become right with a holy God.
Enter Jesus. God, knowing we could never get to Him because of our sin, sent His Son to live a perfect life on this earth, die the death intended for us, and rise again defeating sin and death all ultimately to make a way for us to live eternally in fellowship with Him. The cost was Jesus, but He made the sacrifice for us. Jesus made the impossible, possible. There was a solution to our death, a way out. Our job? To simply believe and accept His forgiveness (Romans 10:9).
What a beautiful story God has laid before us.
He is the Ultimate Rescuer, the Salvation Giver before we even knew we needed it, and the Unlimited Source of grace, mercy, love and forgiveness.
Knowing God has forgiven us of everything we have ever done frees us up to forgive others when they wrong or hurt us. Yet, if we are honest, even though we have accepted forgiveness for our own sins, we have such a hard time letting go of being wronged by others, don’t we?
We are quick to accept restitution and forgiveness from our Savior, knowing there is grace unending and mercy forever. But when someone wrongs us...they better watch out.
Jesus spoke to this attitude - of the forgiven not forgiving - while he walked here on earth. Take a second to read Matthew 18:21-35.
In verses 32-33 The Message version sums the story up with this: “I forgave your entire debt when you begged me for mercy. Shouldn’t you be compelled to be merciful to your fellow servant who asked for mercy?”
The Lord says in Hebrews 8:12, “I will remember their sins no more.” But what if He took a lesson from us grudge-holders and instead said, “I will forgive, but I will never forget.”
What would salvation look like for us then?
Take a minute and imagine if Jesus forgave the way you forgive others who have wronged you. If Jesus forgave like you forgave, would you have His perfect salvation, or would He be holding a grudge against you for something that happened a long time ago? Or would he secretly be angry about something small that happened last week?
Jesus said in Luke 7:47 (NIV), “Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven--as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little." As Christians, we know that we have not just been forgiven a little, but a lot. In fact, salvation means that we have been forgiven entirely. 1 Corinthians 13:5 says that “love keeps no record of wrongs”. This means for us, we are commanded to love as much as we have been forgiven...entirely.
I believe your ability to forgive directly coincides with your own sense of self-righteousness.
You are not greater than the sinner next to you, no matter what they have done. Romans 3:23 (NIV) says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (emphasis mine). So if you are unforgiving towards someone, it’s comes across as if you believe that their sin is greater than yours and not worthy of forgiveness.
Have you ever been in an airplane and looked down upon a mountain range or an ocean shore? You can look down and see the peaks of the mountains or the breaking waves but you cannot tell which mountain is taller or which wave is bigger. Why? Because you are so far above them. They all look the same when you are looking down at them.
The same is true about our sins in the eyes of God. While some sins may result in more serious repercussions, when it comes to separating us from God, all sins are the same. One is no bigger than the other when it comes to our relationship with God. Every sin breaks fellowship between us and our Father. No one is exempt.
So today, let’s forgive like Jesus has forgiven us and let’s love entirely. We all deserve to be eternally separated with God but instead, we were offered forgiveness and fellowship with Him forever. What a gift. So when someone wrongs us, let’s not look at it as a reason to hold a grudge, but an opportunity to forgive just as God has forgiven us. What a picture of the Gospel!
Have you accepted forgiveness from your Savior? There is nothing too great that He cannot forgive. I pray you accept His mercy and grace today and live in that freedom.