The Awesome Reality Of God’s Love

By Dan Elliott
Christian Educators Association Intl. (CEAI)

[1 Peter 2:21-25] This suffering is all part of what God has called you to. Christ, who suffered for you, is your example. Follow in his steps. He never sinned, and he never deceived anyone. He did not retaliate when he was insulted. When he suffered, he did not threaten to get even. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly. He personally carried away our sins in his own body on the cross so we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. You have been healed by his wounds! Once you were wandering like lost sheep. But now you have turned to your Shepherd, the Guardian of your souls.

Can you imagine it? All the Scriptures record that Jesus went through-- and without sin no less-- and yet He did not lose His temper and even utter an angry word without it being the very purpose of God to do so (i.e. with the money changers in the temple etc.). He never said hurtful things in retaliation. He always spoke exact truth that convicted His hearers of their sin.

Because of His sinlessness, He was willing to bear in His own suffering all your sin, my sin, and everyone else's, too. It is hard for me to image how wonderful God's love is for us to do this. And, according to verse 24, there was purpose to all this. It was not just to be nice and loving. It was done "so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right!" the Apostle Peter tells us.

Beyond this, the wounds of Christ had purpose as well-- they healed us. It is as though each thing that you or I need healing from was transferred to Christ's body instead.The gravest, of course was our 'sin-sickness.' And that was what killed Christ-- not the torture. The sheer weight of the sin of all mankind on His sinless soul drove Him to lay His life down--only to pick it up again in three days as He prophesied.

How can we sit through Easter season after Easter season and not become absolutely overwhelmed with this truth?

To wrap all this up, Peter reminds us that we have a shepherd who guides us, and guards our very souls. What joy-- inexpressible. Rejoice in that today no matter what else you must face!

". . .lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other's faults because of your love. Always keep yourselves united with the Holy Spirit and bind yourselves together with peace" (Eph. 4:1-3)