Titus 3:4-7 NKJV “But when the kindness and the love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”
The bible tells us that we have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. The wages of sin is not just a physical death but more significantly, a spiritual death that separates us from God. We will all have to stand before the Great White Throne of God and be judged for our sins one day. If we know that God is holy, righteous and just, how will He judge us on that day ? There may be constant torment in our hearts and minds if we think that we can not measure up to His holy and righteous standards no matter how hard we try by our own merits and strengths. It could be a constant striving to do good and to earn our ‘worthiness’ or ‘righteousness’. But just how good is ‘good enough’ ?
This need to feel ‘good enough’ can translate into a striving or struggle to find love and acceptance from the people around us. But human love is at most times conditional, even from our family and those we love. Human beings are flawed and we all make mistakes, are self centred and we wrong one another due to our sin nature. We can find it very hard to forgive and love those that wrong us. Reversely, if we have committed a wrong or crime, we may think it is unforgivable, or society judges us and we then lose hope. This is where many may find it hard to believe that despite our sins and disobedience to God, He would show His great love for us by sending His only Son to save us all from eternal separation from Him in hell. His unmerited favour towards us is illogical by the moral system of this world where sin deserves punishment.
Yet God, who is full of mercy and grace, loves Mankind so much that He has a divine solution for the wages of Sin. He sacrificed his only Son, who was sinless, to die on the cross, shedding His blood to pay for our sins. In so doing, He cleansed and renewed us by the Holy Spirit through Christ. We are therefore forgiven and justified ONLY by His grace. This was done so that no one can boast in his own work to be righteous enough, all are given unmerited favour and salvation through faith in Christ’s work on the cross. We only have to repent of our sins and believe in Jesus Christ as our Saviour. The good news is, not only did He give us the hope of eternal life in Heaven with Him when we put our faith in His Son Jesus Christ, but incredibly, He also allows us to be co- heirs with Him in Heaven ! How magnanimous !
When we can grasp this incredibly great act of sacrificial Love and Grace, we will have a deep sense of peace and comfort that we are loved and forgiven, unconditionally and perfectly, by our Father in Heaven.
Sermon Series: Fear Does Not Belong to You
提多书3:4~7 4但到了神－我们救主的恩慈和祂向人所施的慈爱显明的时候， 5祂便救了我们；并不是因我们自己所行的义，乃是照祂的怜悯，借着重生的洗和圣灵的更新。 6圣灵就是神借着耶稣基督－我们救主厚厚浇灌在我们身上的， 7好叫我们因祂的恩得称为义，可以凭着永生的盼望成为后嗣。
圣经告诉我们：“世人都犯了罪，并且亏缺了 神的荣耀。” 罪的工价不仅仅是肉体上的死亡，更重要的是那将我们与神分开的灵上的死亡。我们都有一天必须站立在 神的大白宝座前，并我们的罪而被审判。如果我们知道 神是圣洁、公义又公正的，那一天日祂将如何来审判我们？如果我们认为无论如何努力、凭自己的功绩和力量，都无法遵守他的圣洁和正义的标准的话，我们的心灵和思想上可能会不断遭受折磨。我们可能会不断地自我驱策去行善，就为了要赢得“价值”和“公义”，但到什么样的程度才是“足够好”呢？
感到“足够好”的需求可以转化为努力或挣扎以寻求周围人的爱与接纳。但人的爱在大多数情况下是有条件的，即使是来自我们的家人或我们所爱的人也是如此。人是有缺陷的，我们都会犯错，都是以自我为中心；由于我们的罪恶天性，我们彼此错待。我们发现很难饶恕与爱那些错待我们的人；相反，如果我们犯了错或犯罪，可能认为这是不可原谅的、或者社会会审判我们，从而失去了希望。这是许多人难以相信 神的一个点，即纵使我们有罪和悖逆了 神，但祂仍会派遣祂的独生爱子来拯救我们所有人，使我们脱离地狱中与祂永远的分离，以此显明祂对我们伟大的爱。在这个罪恶应受惩罚的世界道德体系下，祂对我们的所不配得的宠爱是不合逻辑的。