Quest for Hope
Lay It Down 2-26-16
Romans 5:1-2, 6-10
Yesterday, we recognized the depth to which God desires to stretch our faith; like Abraham we must believe in His promises and take God at His Word. Today in our quest for hope, we will see the extent to which Christ’s sacrifice for our sins has taken us in our relationship with God. Because of Christ, not only are we restored in relationship with the Father, but we are actually imparted the spiritual life of Christ within our physical bodies through the Spirit, so we can bring glory to God who is Love.
Romans 5:1-2, 6-10 (NLT)
1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. 2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.
6 When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. 7 Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. 8 But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. 9 And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. 10 For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of his Son.
Sometimes sacrificing ourselves so another person we care about can embrace his/her wants or needs is difficult. When we are dealing with someone we love and who is good to us, we may lay down our wants or needs so he/she can be blessed. It’s a kind of sacrificial love called, agape. Love makes sacrifices and sometimes we are called upon to make them. We don’t mind so much because, after all, we love and are committed to this person. But, what would happen if God called you to make a sacrifice for someone who discredited you, hated you, or even rejected you? Does anything within you leap to act at such an invitation? Does the voice in your head say, “I just cannot wait to lay down my life for that person?” But, that is exactly what our passage is telling us that Jesus did for us. While we were still steeped in selfishness as enemies of agape, Jesus died for us so we could be reconnected to God; to be a friend of God who is Love. Jesus is our example of sacrificial, unfailing, and passionate agape. When we invite him to enter our hearts, Christ brings along agape to help us lay down our lives in service to God so others can experience His character, too. Blessings abound for Friends!
Prayer: Father, I cannot comprehend the love you have extended me; the extent to which you have gone to reconnect with me and be my Friend. Jesus, thank you for bringing the blessings of heaven to my spirit so I can learn to love like you. Holy Spirit, keep me loving and right today in the Father’s sight. In Jesus’ name. Amen.