We Can Never Go Beyond God's Grace
We all struggle live the Christian life. We all struggle to live our lives in obedience to God’s word. And when you’ve been living the Christian life long enough, it can sometimes feel like two steps forward and one step back. We can easily become frustrated with our Christian walk and sometime even begin to wonder, ‘Am I even saved?’ This is where promises like 1 John 1:9 are so important to hang on to and to recall to mind. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” For many years I often wondered what God’s faithfulness and justice have to do with being forgiven of our sins. Why does John say that God is “faithful” and “just” to forgive us of our sins? What he means is that God has made many promises in his word that, for those who place faith in Christ, their sins are forgiven. In John 3:16, Jesus says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” Whoever believes in the Son will not perish. Again in John 5:24 Jesus says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.” Thus, salvation is a matter of hearing and believing. Nothing else. That’s it. And the apostle Paul wrote in Romans 10:9, “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” You will be saved, he says. These are promises from God for those who place faith in Christ. John’s point is that God always keeps his promises. Still, he says God is “faithful and just to forgive us our sins.” What does justice have to do with God forgiving us of our sins? Christ died on the cross to pay for the sins of all those who place faith in him. If Christ has paid for our sin—for those of us who have placed faith in Christ—then justice demands that God must forgive us of our sins, otherwise God would be unjust. Thus, 1 John 1:9 reminds us that so long as we are trusting in Christ alone for our salvation, no matter how badly we blow it, we can never go beyond the grace of God. There is great comfort in knowing that.
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