It’s continually tempting to have a moralistic view of the Bible and to believe that we are accepted by God based upon our performance. The temptation to put ourselves on a performance-track with God is a deadly, damning temptation that attacks us over and over again. Today I stumbled on a video of Brennen Manning talking about the love of God. He said;
“I am convinced that on the judgment day the Lord Jesus is going to ask us one and only one question; “Did you believe that I loved you, that I desired you, that I waited for you day after day, that I longed to hear the sound of your voice?”
“Do you see why it is so important to lay hold of this basic truth of our faith? We are only as big as your concept of God. We often make God in our own image and he turns out to be as fussy, rude, narrow-minded, legalistic, judgmental, unforgiving and unloving as we are.”
“The God of the Word revealed in Jesus Christ comes right to you and says; “I know your whole life story. I know every skeleton in your closet. I know every moment of sin, shame, dishonesty and degraded love that has darkened your past. Right now I know your shallow faith, your feeble prayer life, and your inconsistent discipleship and my word is this: I dare you to trust that I love you just as you are and not as you should be because you are never going to be as you should be.”
Do you really believe God loves you and cherishes you just as you are? I believe that genuine believers will answer to God at the Judgment Seat of Christ and that unbelievers will face Him at the Great White Throne Judgment at another place and time, but Manning’s point is still valid. People of true and genuine saving faith are those who believe that God through Christ has loved and accepted them on behalf of Jesus—not their own merit or performance.
Hear the voice of Jesus today: “Do you really believe that I know everything there is to know about you and love you with an unwavering and eternal love? Do you believe I love you?”
“God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) “I am convinced that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers nor things present nor things to come nor power, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)
Are you convinced?