GOD ALWAYS HAD A PLAN OF REDEMPTION FOR HIS CHILDREN
C.S. Lewis — “Fallen man is not simply an imperfect creature who needs improvement: he is a rebel who must lay down his arms. Laying down your arms, surrendering, saying you are sorry, realizing that you have been on the wrong track and getting ready to start life over again from the ground floor.”
We all are in need of a Savior. We have rebelled against the Most High God. We have gone astray in our sin. Our waywardness has caused a barrier between us and a holy God. How then are we to be saved?
“Supposing God became a man — suppose our human nature which can suffer and die was amalgamated with God’s nature in one person — then that person could help us. He could surrender His will, and suffer and die, because He was man; and He could do it perfectly because He was God.” — C.S. Lewis
A plan was in place… a way to salvation laid out before the foundation of the world… a mystery that has now been revealed. God’s perfect Son would pay the ultimate price for our freedom. He would be the atonement for our sin. He would break down the barrier between us and the Father. Our Savior’s act of love would unite us to Him and give us life eternal in His presence.
“This process of surrender – this movement full speed astern – is what Christians call repentance. Now repentance is no fun at all. It is something much harder than merely eating humble pie. It means unlearning all the self-conceit and self-will that we have been training ourselves into for thousands of years. It means undergoing a kind of death.” — C.S. Lewis
All we need do is repent and accept His perfect sacrifice on our behalf. We turn from our wayward paths and come home to our God. His enduring love for us led Him to the cross. So nothing we confess can make Him love us less. If Christ gave His life for us, He isn’t going to condemn us. He promises to remove our sin as far away as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).
Jesus’ sacrifice will always be more than enough for our complete redemption. Our sin may be great… yet the mercy of our God will always be greater still. The price He paid on the cross was once for all. His righteousness becomes our righteousness forever. Once we ask for forgiveness, our sins are washed away. We are justified by the absolute grace of our Redeemer.
“I believe that no man is ever condemned for any sin except one—that he will not leave his sins and come out of them, and be the child of Him who is his Father.” — George MacDonald
We become new creations when we believe. We are not just improved versions of our old selves… refined, remodeled or rehabilitated. The Holy Spirit gives us new life. We are recreated, living in dynamic union with Christ our Savior. It is not about merely turning over a new leaf… it is the start of a new life under a new Master. We are reborn into God’s family and given a new family name.
Christ’s Spirit dwells in us… bestowing upon us new minds and hearts aligned with His. Day by day we are renewed in the spirits of our minds and become more like Christ. Our thoughts, words and actions more closely reflect His. Our views change… moving from a worldly perspective to a heavenly perspective.
“I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” — Jeremiah 31:34
Through Christ, we have absolute atonement. Once we repent, we need not continue to repent of the same sin over and over. Imagine… if we told someone we cared about that we were sorry for in some way hurting them… and they forgave us. Would they want us to continue to say we’re sorry for the same act over and over? They would want us to accept their forgiveness. They would want us to forget the hurt, leave it in the past and move on with our lives.
So it is with our God. Our sins are not only completely forgiven, they are forgotten. This may sound unbelievable since the sins are still very memorable to us. Yet our Heavenly Father sees us through the lens of His Son. He sees the righteousness of Christ in us. God views us not as we see ourselves, but as who we are in Christ and who He created us to be.
God’s forgiveness is permanent. He will never again remember our sin or count it against us. It is as if that sin no longer exists. He forgives and forgets. When our past sin comes to mind, we need no longer live in guilt or condemnation. We can thank our Savior for the price He paid at the cross on our behalf. We can praise Him for His merciful forgiveness and grace. We can walk in His freedom and blessing.
Our God always knew we would need a Savior. The Master planned this way of complete redemption before the beginning of time. This was His perfect plan… a gift of salvation to all who would believe.