The Unconditional Good News of the Gospel
Most people are familiar with John 3:16: “For God so loved the world…” The world refers to the human race. There is another verse that is similar. “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation” 2 Corinthians 5:19.
In other words, no matter who we are or what we have done, God is not counting our sins against us. For every sin, past, present and future was taken by Jesus to the cross. The sin barrier that separated us from God was removed. There is nothing that prevents us from coming to God just as we are.
God will not force Himself upon us, for love never forces anyone to do anything. In order for full reconciliation to take place and bring unity in a relationship, both individuals must be open. God took the initiative to bring reconciliation. We are now free to come to Him just as we are. “We are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God” 2 Corinthians 5:20.
Through His perfect life and death, Jesus redeemed everyone and gave eternal life to the whole human race. If we don’t believe this truth, John says we call God a liar.
“He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; [they experience the Holy Spirit bringing new life within]. He who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son” 1 John 5:10-11.
What Is Our Part?
Rightly we may sing of God’s “Amazing Grace” and wonderful love. The perfect life and death of Jesus allowed God to be just when giving eternal life to the whole human race. Understanding God’s gracious love and forgiveness draws us to Him and makes it easier for us to be honest with Him (confession) and surrender our lives to him (repentance).
When we surrender our lives to Jesus as our Savior and Lord, a miracle takes place. We become spiritually alive and experience a living connection with God (John 1:11-13; 3:4,5; 14:16-23). This opens the way for the Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth as we pray and study the Bible (John 16:12,13). The truth transforms us from within and sets us free from guilt, shame, and slavery to sin. Romans 12:1,2; John 8:31-36).
We always have the freedom to resist and reject what the Holy Spirit is teaching us. If we do, we are telling God that we don’t want a Savior from sin. Jesus will then honor our choice and we will perish in the end.
No one will be lost because they have sinned, for Jesus removed the sin barrier on the cross. People will perish because they love sin; they love darkness, rather than light and would not want to live with God forever (John 3:19,20; Revelation 6:14-16).
(To understand how God was able to give eternal life to the human race, go to Compelling Love Bible Studies, Lesson #4 – The Gospel Foundation: Finding Security In Christ).