So you know how yesterday I talked about the high standards God sets for us, and how Jesus said you can’t assume you’re ok just because you didn’t murder anyone, you’re guilty even if you just get angry with someone and call them a bad name? (Matthew 5:21-22) And how God tells us to love everyone just as we love ourselves, and we all fall short of that standard…
And yet… Jesus said something a lot more radical than that.
He basically said we’re all guilty even if we don’t call someone a bad name, or fall short of “love your neighbour”. You may be a really nice person who shows kindness to everyone, you may sacrifice yourself daily in service to others, you may give all that you have to charity, you may be perfectly moral, ethical, good – you’re not, we all know none of us really live up to that 24/7, but let’s just pretend for a minute that there’s someone out there who does… Even someone like that is still guilty in the eyes of God, unless…
Unless they put their faith in the Son of God, the Lord and Saviour of mankind.
Here’s what Jesus himself said:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.” (John 3:16-18)
We’re guilty not because of our bad behaviour or because of our bad attitudes. We’re all guilty, no matter what we’ve done, unless we put our faith in the Son of God, the Lord and Saviour of mankind.
Because that’s who he is – the Lord.
I talk a lot on my blog about how we all need Jesus because we need salvation. About how grateful I am to him for what he’s done for me. About how wonderful he is, because he sacrificed himself for us – going to a horrible and painful death to rescue sinners! But there’s more.
Before all that comes the basic fact that he is Lord, that through him the world was made and that we all owe him our very existence.
And that he is love personified.
If you don’t know Jesus yet, you need to get that sorted not just because you need him but because you owe him everything.
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:15-17)