“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins…And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach…” Colossians 1:13, 21-22
I’ve been keenly aware lately how what I really believe (not what I think I believe) influences life in every area. We have read these verses, and, thankfully many like them, over and over again. And yet, does the deep truth of them get into our every day lives? I don’t ask to make you feel bad, but only as a way of opening our eyes to the reality that we often think we really believe something when our lives say otherwise.
If Jesus truly took all my sin at the cross, and I am truly, fully and completely forgiven of all past, present and future sin, is that guiding my every day life? Do I really believe that there is no reason at all to feel guilty about anything, or, do I feel (like many of us do) that some guilt is necessary or even expected because sin still lingers in our lives? Do I believe, like the above verse says, that I am holy and blameless and beyond reproach in God’s eyes?
I think many of us run around expecting to feel guilty because we still sin. And we still expect to pay for our sins too. We expect punishment, guilt and condemnation to play a part in our lives as believers. Oh sure, there are consequences to our actions and, if we break the law of our land, we will pay a price. But I’m talking about before God – are we still expecting retribution, anger, punishment or shame from Him? I think deep down many of us are. We even use the word repentance to mean we must do some sort of penance, some little emotional beating, to pay – just a little – for our sins.
Let me say that when we feel guilty, or, feel like we must pay just a little for our erroneous ways or even mistakes, we corrupt what Jesus did on the cross. He completely, utterly and fully took all our sins upon Himself and paid all the penalty for what we did. Because He forgave we now live in a different kingdom (as the verse states). He reconciled us while we were still living in sin – we did nothing to earn or desire this reconciliation. He did all this without consulting us. He did it because His love is vastly different than our love.
His love motivated Him to save us, not our love for Him. He now presents us holy and blameless, without reproach based solely on the work Christ did on the cross – period! That means, that His work on the cross was sooo complete that it now makes us perfect before the Father. There isn’t anything to fix in you, in me…not before His eyes. If we really believe that heart and soul, how it would free us from every sin that so easily entangles us. He sees us perfect in Christ – end of statement. This isn’t something just for when we get to heaven my friend, it is truth for today. It’s not anything you can earn or work for either. It’s just something to receive. He was the one who reconciled us to the Father by getting rid of all our sins. If you sin tomorrow, He will not see you any less perfect. If we grab a hold of that truth, I believe it will transform our lives.