Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Rediscovering the Scandal of God's Love

As I mentioned in my last post, I'm working through C. J. Mahaney's Living The Cross Centered Life. Today's chapter is called "The Divine Dilemma," and it focuses on the endlessly amazing fact that a holy God somehow and for some reason does not destroy immediately the creatures who have so consistently and enthusiastically rebelled against Him. If God is holy, then his wrath must be revealed against sin. It surely is on a daily basis, as sinful men and women daily experience the effects of being fallen people living fallen lives in a fallen world. Yet the sort of cataclysmic, world-ending, heavens rending judgment has not yet fallen. Why? Because in addition to being the utterly holy black-robed Judge who rules as Deity over all things and creatures, God is also the gracious and compassionate One (Ex. 33), whose love and holiness met perfectly at the Cross in the sacrifice of Jesus.

Yet as awe-inspiring as these truths are, in our day, they often fail to inspire much wonder. Mahaney writes,
...when you tell non-Christians, 'God loves you,' they aren't surprised, they aren't perplexed, they aren't stunned. Regrettably, the same is true among most evangelicals, who simply assume this gracious disposition of God-and therefore presume upon it (p. 61).
We have forgotten our true condition as we stand before a holy God, and so we aren't impressed anymore by His love. When we hear that God loves us, we are apt to think, "Well naturally. After all, I'm kind of cute, and I'm not really a bad person, in fact I'm far better than most. " It is because we think so little of our sin that we also think so little of God's grace; and it is because we think so little of God's grace that we in the Church are so little transformed by it.


Alissa said...

VERY good thoughts. :)

The Bullhorn said...

Thanks, sis. I love to hear from you!