Our God is absolutely more astounding than we can fathom! Whether we are now living or have lived our lives with indifference to God or even in active rebellion, God is still fully committed to resolution with all violators. Even if this other party (the human race) is completely guilty and doesn’t even care to be reconciled to Him and is actively hostile to God, He “desires all people to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Tim. 2:4) Oh, would that deep grace and mercy and the offer of peace be constantly my response to those who have offended me!
Just how can a God who is righteously opposed to sin, who in His holiness is as far from sin as one could be, how could He still rescue someone like you or me from His furious wrath towards sin? Few of us would ever dare to paint ourselves as dark as our sin makes us in contrast to the purity of God. We cannot grasp that! Most of us want to consider ourselves as “ok” and acceptable, even to a God whose standards are humanly unattainable. We grade ourselves on a scale that is unfamiliar to God. On our best day, our “good” is still insufficient.
Over time, I am afraid many Christians have allowed the gospel truths and Bible stories to lose their impact on them. They become as anemic as the word “awesome” is today. We memorized in our heads the principles of the gospel and we know how the Bible stories play out. We have allowed familiarization to cause us to lose rather than grow our sense of amazement in what these truths ought to mean for us. For unbelieving people who are far from God, it can be a struggle even to acknowledge a need to be “rescued” from themselves, that sin impacts us all and creates a divide between us and God. Still, God is not content to have these things remain so. He has made provision through a Rescuer, and His Spirit is relentless in pursuit of the heart and soul of the vilest sinner as well as the culturally affirmed “good guy” who is ignorant of his own predicament.
“The glory of the gospel,” says R.C. Sproul, “is this: The one from whom we need to be saved is the one who has saved us.” John Stott expressed it in this way: “Divine love triumphed over divine wrath by divine sacrifice.” The prophet Job recognized the dilemma of reconciling sinful, mortal man with God. “How then can a mortal be righteous before God?” (Job 25:4) In his hopeless longing, Job pleaded for a rescuer, a mediator. “If only there were someone to arbitrate between us, to lay his hand upon us both, someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more.” (Job 9:33-34) Job sensed the gulf between humanity and God, and somehow envisioned an intermediary to bridge that distance.
Have you considered that in order to be our Savior, to pay our debt, this rescuer had to be like us, someone fully and truly human? And he must be unlike us also. He must be sinless because only a perfect sacrifice is acceptable. Job looked ahead and longed for this mediator. Paul reveals to us in 1 Tim. 2:5-6 who God ultimately provided as His remedy to provide reconciliation to humankind. “There is one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.” Has the depth of what the cross means become mundane to you? Only an astounding God could conceive of and unfold a plan as magnificent and complete as the cross. Just what does the cross mean to you? Think About It.