‘Where sin increased, grace increased all the more.’ Romans 5:20 NIV
Bill Wilson and Bob Smith, co-founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, once visited a lawyer who was a hardened alcoholic. Confined to bed because of violent behaviour, the man had no choice but to listen to their stories of recovery. But as soon as they started talking about a ‘Higher Power’, the lawyer shook his head and said, ‘It’s too late for me. I still believe in God but I know He no longer believes in me.’
How sad—and misguided! Are you worried that God won’t accept you because of your sins? You don’t have to be! Paul says, ‘Where sin increased, grace increased all the more.’ And he should know, because before his Damascus Road conversion he was, by his own admission, the worst of sinners (1 Timothy 1:15). Afterwards God used him to reach the world with the Gospel (see, for example, Acts 17:2).
‘Grace’ was so central to Paul’s message that he mentions it in the very beginning of all his Epistles. That’s because he understood that by trying to stand on your own merit before a Holy God, every time you mess up you feel like a failure—unloved, unworthy, and unaccepted.
Psychologists say we try to conform to the image of us that’s seen by the most important person in our lives. So can you imagine what would happen if you started seeing yourself as God sees you? The truth is, you’re His redeemed child and He sees you through the blood of Jesus, which cleanses all your sins (see 1 John 1:9). There’s nothing you can do to make God love you more, and nothing you can do to make Him love you less! And that’s the good news!
SoulFood: Gen 30:25–31:55, Luke 9:37–45, Ps 145:1–13, Pro 4:20–22
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2024