The Glory of God's Redemption

How do we make sense of the world around us? The Bible declares that God is sovereign over everything. There is nothing that happens which is outside of God’s control. Yet we see so much sin, suffering and evil all around. How should we understand this paradox?
 
God created man in His own image. He was created in a state of innocence, with the ability to sin and also the ability not to sin. So, God placed Adam and Eve in a probationary state to test their obedience to Him. He placed them in the Garden of Eden, a wonderful place that could satisfy all of their needs; and He gave them one restriction. God forbade them to eat of the fruit from a tree in the middle of the garden. Since God treated Adam as the representative of the entire human race, Adam’s choice would ultimately affect the spiritual condition of everyone who descended from him.
 
Adam sinned; and as a just consequence, mankind is born with a sinful nature. He is born with no ability not to sin. Whenever he does anything God forbids or refrains from doing anything God requires, he is guilty of sin and deserving of God’s judgment and punishment for sin.
 
Since God is a perfect, holy and just Judge, He demands perfection. Yet man is unable to meet God’s holy standard. As he continues to sin, the sins mount up against the day of judgment. There’s nothing a man can do to erase even a single sin. So, he owes a moral debt to God that he will never be able to repay. The whole world is accountable to God for their sin, and His perfect justice executed on impenitent sinners will bring glory to God.
 
But just as God’s justice is a holy justice, His love is a holy love. He chose to give Jesus a vast number of people who would turn from their sin and love and follow Him. But God couldn’t just overlook sin and negotiate His justice; sin had to be punished. So, God sent His only Son to suffer and die for the sins of everyone who would place their faith and trust in Him.
 
He demands everyone repent and turn to Christ; but only those people, whom the Holy Spirit regenerates, are willing to do so. The rest “loved darkness instead of the light because their deeds were evil.” (John 3:19) Apart from God’s electing love and the saving work of Christ, no one would have hope. But because God is a merciful, gracious, and loving God, His people will give Him praise for His marvelous grace forevermore.

By Jim Connell

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