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Christ's love compels us

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작성자 카마리오한인연합감리교회 작성일21-03-26 17:40 조회142회 댓글0건

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Christ’s love compels us

2 Corinthians 5:14-15

“For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.”

The strongest asset that a person can have is a strong, resilient heart. A heart becomes resilient when it has been nurtured by the everlasting love.

What God does to save a sinner is to love the sinner lavishly. How can God love a sinner if the sinner is not so lovable? There are so many criminals whose crimes are so horrible that they are unforgivable.

God, however, succeeded in loving the sinners through the atoning death of Christ. The penalty for the sins of the world was paid more than abundantly upon the cross of Jesus. In other words, the atoning death of Christ established the legal foundation for the divine forgiveness for all human beings. Bring a worst sinner to God. God will forgive the person and will love him/her so lavishly that the sinner will be dumbfounded by the manner that he/she is loved.

The heart of the sinner is fragile. It does not appear fragile because it equipped itself with so many defense mechanisms. Because of so many attacks and offenses that it experienced, it wants to protect itself, either by attacking the offenders back or safeguarding itself by building thick walls around it. God is aware of the defense mechanisms that the sinner equipped himself/herself with. God does not condemn it but just acknowledges it. And God only keeps loving the sinner until he/she voluntarily disarms himself/herself. The sinner who got to see how extremely vulnerable Christ had become on the cross becomes also vulnerable himself/herself before the cross.

Then the sinner repents of his/her defense mechanisms. The very defense mechanisms that he/she used to protect himself/herself from being attacked also prevented any love from coming into his/her heart. Now that he/she took off that thick armor, God’s love can finally flow into his/hear heart. And as God’s love flows into his/her heart, his/her heart becomes nurtured by God’s love and becomes healthy and resilient without the need for any defense mechanism.

This change of heart is called conversion. It refers to a fundamental switch in terms of the direction of our life. Those who lived for themselves, through this conversion, will live for God and other people. Selfishness turns into selflessness.

Christ’s love compels us. Paul explains how the death of Christ substituted our deaths. In the very place where I should have died, Christ died. That is true love. And that love is compelling. It compels us so much that we no longer feel the need to live for ourselves. Because why? We have Jesus right in front of us, and he already lived, died, and rose again, FOR US! For us to live for ourselves would be redundant.

Now, if our hearts have been exposed to Christ’s compelling love, and if we are still selfish, that does not make any sense. If our hearts have been nurtured by God’s almighty love, which can turn a sinner into a saint, our purpose of life now should be for Jesus. For God. For people. This is the firm foundation for a Christian life. We live for the LORD, not for ourselves.

Amen.

 

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