Wednesday March 23, 2005
The Words of Our Faith
Many Christians say their sins are forgiven without understanding what that truly means. God carefully arranged the sacrifice of His Son in order to provide for our freedom from His wrath and our growth in His love. Here are some definitions to help you understand so great a salvation. (Hebrews 2:3)
Redemption. To redeem something means to provide payment for it - Jesus liberated us through His sacrifice. He paid the penalty for all of our sins, for all time, for all of humanity.
Forgiven. Forgiveness is the removal of a burden. At the cross, our guilt burden and our punishment were borne by Jesus Christ.
Justification. God declares us no longer guilty because our sin burden has been removed. In its place, He bestows righteousness.
Reconciliation. When enemies are brought into fellowship, they are reconciled. Our sinful nature makes us enemies of a holy God, but because Jesus' sacrifice brings us justification, we are reconciled to our Father.
Sanctification. As the Holy Spirit in us works to "reprogram" our fleshly patterns of thinking, we become increasingly free from the presence of sin in our life. God polishes our jagged edges until we each become a shining jewel.
Access. Before Jesus, only the High Priest could enter God's presence in the Holy of Holies. But the Savior's death tore the veil shielding the Holy of Holies in the temple. With that symbolic gesture, God announced that we are all free to enter His presence because of Jesus' sacrifice.
The more we understand about what was involved in Christ's sacrifice and the gift of salvation, the more grateful we should be.
Be sure to tell your teen about Teen Connection - the official teen outreach of In Touch Ministries. This cutting-edge web site is filled with practical content, including articles, interviews, a study guide, and devotionals, for teenagers of all spiritual maturity levels. The featured interview for March is best-selling band Caedmon's Call. Check out Teen Connection today!
Are you looking to take the next step in your spiritual walk? Enroll today in the Charles Stanley Institute for Christian Living - a free, virtual one-on-one mentoring program with Dr. Charles Stanley. Register online today at www.charlesstanleyinstitute.com.