Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | June 24, 2015

The Triumph of Love

The Results of No Condemnation

There is an old hymn named, “Free from the law – oh, happy condition” written by P.P. Bliss; the first verse has the following words:

Free from the law—oh, happy condition!
Jesus hath bled, and there is remission;
Cursed by the law and bruised by the fall,
Christ hath redeemed us once for all.

It didn’t take long for a new set of words to appear which mocked the thought of forgiveness from sin and changed the second line to :

Free from the law – oh, happy condition!
Sin as you will for there is remission.

The singing of the revised words was intended to bring laughter and nods as each of the hearers imagined, perhaps, some of their favorite sins. Such thoughts and reactions indicate a pathetic ignorance of grace and love but in no wise change the absolute certainty of verses like Romans 8:1-4 which tell us triumphantly:

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

One who didn’t understand might well ask, “if all sins are forgiven why not go ahead and sin and then just ask forgiveness? Even though the penalty of sin, death, has been paid for by the shed blood of Christ, there are consequences of sin that must be faced at the experiential level.

God’s objective is to protect us from those consequences by warning us away from activities which can cause us harm; it is like a parent telling a child not to play in the street, the parent understands very well the dangers of passing cars and what injury could be caused the child in the event of an accident.

What is most important, however, is the knowledge that we have sinned against God, the one who loved us so much He sent His only begotten Son to die in our place on the cross.

The Triumph of Love

When there is love for another there comes an overwhelming desire to avoid hurting that someone; a desire to protect that someone from harm of any nature. Whether that someone is a person or an animal the desire to protect is deep and profound.

My wife and I have two cats which we both love very much, Tom Boy and Abby who are special members of our family. They have the habit, especially at meal time, to get underfoot and use all of their feline charms to compel us to hurry in the preparation of their next meal. In the process of doing this they will sit at our feet and curl their tails around our feet in such a way the least misstep would cause us to step on their tails causing them a great deal of pain.

At times like that we have learned we must look down and take extraordinary care to step to a spot where there are no tails at risk and sometimes that gets tricky especially as their tails are constantly in motion. The point being our loving concern for their well being demands our careful steps at times like that.

This simple illustration though demonstrates a much more profound truth; our love for the Lord Jesus Christ and our gratitude for the sacrifice he made to provide salvation demands we do our best to avoid doing more of that for which He had to die. Sin, in all its variations, becomes ugly and distasteful and something to be avoided as completely as possible. We try to avoid sinning because it is against our Lord and we love Him too much to want to grieve Him by our sin.

 The Joy of Fellowship with God

The last verse in 1 Corinthians 13 tells us:

“13 Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.

There are many reasons love is the greatest but one particular reason is the way it shows us how God loves us. I believe God’s love for His children surpasses our ability to even understand it; all of us may feel, from time to time that it seems almost too much to ask to think that we could be loved by God that much. We know all too well those awful hidden things of which we have been forgiven but which still lurk in our knowledge of the past.

Unbidden memories, unwelcome thoughts can rob us of the joy of our fellowship with God, we feel dirty and unworthy of His love; this is our sin nature trying to compromise us as soldiers in the spiritual warfare and must be resisted with the shield of faith.

There is a precious hymn that describes a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins” I visualize my sin and its memory sinking out of sight into that wondrous fountain. The words of this hymn are so powerful I’ve included them all.

THERE IS A FOUNTAIN FILLED WITH BLOOD

There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains.
Lose all their guilty stains, lose all their guilty stains;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood lose all their guilty stains.

The dying thief rejoiced to see that fountain in his day;
And there have I, though vile as he, washed all my sins away.
Washed all my sins away, washed all my sins away;
And there have I, though vile as he, washed all my sins away.

Dear dying Lamb, Thy precious blood shall never lose its power
Till all the ransomed church of God be saved, to sin no more.
Be saved, to sin no more, be saved, to sin no more;
Till all the ransomed church of God be saved, to sin no more.

E’er since, by faith, I saw the stream Thy flowing wounds supply,
Redeeming love has been my theme, and shall be till I die.
And shall be till I die, and shall be till I die;
Redeeming love has been my theme, and shall be till I die.

Then in a nobler, sweeter song, I’ll sing Thy power to save,
When this poor lisping, stammering tongue lies silent in the grave.
Lies silent in the grave, lies silent in the grave;
When this poor lisping, stammering tongue lies silent in the grave.

Lord, I believe Thou hast prepared, unworthy though I be,
For me a blood bought free reward, a golden harp for me!
’Tis strung and tuned for endless years, and formed by power divine,
To sound in God the Father’s ears no other name but Thine.

William Cowper, 1772


Responses

  1. Oh, happy day when Jesus washed my sins away.” Amen.

    Like

  2. Amen David! Thank you for reminding me of this wonderful hymn!

    Like

    • Melanie,

      Thank you for your comment; both of those hymns are a rich blessing and tell a wonderful story of God’s grace. To me it’s sad they are being lost, they have so much to offer.

      David

      Like

  3. What a beautiful message. Thanks Uncle David!

    Like


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