For many of us, the idea of God as an authoritarian figure rules our mind. We think, “Surely God is just waiting to punish me the minute I make a mistake”. But this couldn’t be any further from the truth. The God of the Bible, Yahweh, is full of love, mercy and long suffering towards mankind.
I believe the reason people misinterpret God’s response to them is because they think justice is all about punishment. And in a way they would be right. A perfect God does require atonement for sin.
But what people may not realize is that God has already received atonement for every sin past, present and future, for every person that will ever live. He took that punishment upon Himself when He, in the form of a man, Jesus, sacrificed His perfect life for the sins of all.
As a result, He doesn’t want to punish anyone, His voice to us is one of mercy and grace. If we allow ourselves to feel condemned by Him, it’s because we don’t understand the purpose of His coming. John 3:17 says,
“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
His purpose is actually one of reconciliation.
God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.
2 Corinthians 5:19
God's voice to us is this:
"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
But how do we get God’s voice into our lives?
It begins when we acknowledge Christ’s atoning work for our OWN sins and REPENT of those sins. In doing so we put our faith in the work of God. Some people might be tempted to do good works for God in order to be saved. But the Bible tells us our ONE WORK is to BELIEVE in the WORK OF GOD.
Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, “The WORK OF GOD is this: to BELIEVE in the one he has sent.”
The Bible calls this act of faith, Justification. This means that by God’s work, and by our faith, we are justified in Him.
How we grow in Christ and deal with our sins is another subject. The Bible calls the next steps with Christ, Sanctification. I deal with this subject in other articles, like How To Deal With Sin and The Process of Sanctification: Bringing Holiness to Your Life.
But this article is to show you how the process starts— how to reestablish the voice of God in your spirit.
Some people will tell you to pray a “sinner prayer” in order to receive Christ. And while this may point you in the right direction, there isn’t a “magic prayer" that births you into the Kingdom of God. It’s more an ATTITUDE of heart. Are you ready to give you life to God? Do you want to be DONE with sin?
Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because whoever suffers in the body is DONE WITH SIN.
1 Peter 4:1
If you want to be done with sin, even to the point of suffering, tell God and He will birth you into His Kingdom. By giving you His Spirit, you will be able to hear the voice of God.
For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.
1 Corinthians 2:11-12