But what does this promise really mean? Does it mean that we who have become Christians can rest secure that no matter what we do we shall be saved? Does it mean that God will love us regardless of our response? On the other hand, does it mean that this promise can be fulfilled only if we, in our own strength, maintain our faith in Him? Will God continue to love us only if we continue to love Him? Or is there more to it than that? Let us explore this question by asking: What can actually separate us from the love of God? Please bear with me and we take our time this morning to see the truth and where God is going to take His church (Bride).
Can sin separate us from the love of God? The answer is both “Yes” and “No.” Isaiah writes: “Your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you so that he does not hear” (Isaiah 59:2). If we go on to read the whole chapter, we find that the iniquities and sins that separate are more than individual acts; they are murder, lying, in justice, and violence practiced as a way of life. Those who live thus have exposed themselves for what they are: enemies of God, rather than His people. For the repentant, sin does not permanently separate from God. Zechariah 3 pictures Joshua, the high priest, standing before the angel, clothed in filthy garments, a symbol of the sin of the nation. Yet God does not regard his sin as requiring separation. God does not hide His face, but orders ” ‘Remove the filthy garments from him.'” Then He says to Joshua, ” ‘Behold, I have taken your iniquity away from you, and I will clothe you with rich apparel’ ” (verse 4). Hallelujah
Because of our sin, it would not be surprising if God should be against us. He has every reason to be. It would serve us right, since we have chosen to go our own willful way in the path of disobedience and sin. We deserve God’s wrath, not His grace, and justice would demand that we receive what we deserve. But God is more than a God of justice. He is a God of mercy and love. “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son” (John 3:16).
The greatness of God’s love is measured by two things: the manner in which His love is expressed, and its object. God expressed His love by giving up His only Son to dwell among us and to die for us. In this sacrifice Christ willingly participated. “Though he was in the form of God, . . . [Jesus] did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form he humbled himself and be came obedient unto death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:6-8).
We cannot begin to comprehend what it meant for God to give His only Son. We cannot comprehend infinite love, but we can understand that when God gave us His Son, He gave us the ultimate gift. Anything else would have been easier. God withheld nothing to redeem us. His love was total.
Your servant and brother,
+ Sir Godfrey Gregg
Archbishop and Presiding Prelate
Administrator and Apostolic Head
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TO BE CONTINUED …………