Something For Nothing

Gifts are fun. Just look at the way a child opens her gifts on a birthday with a look of delight that warms the heart. Gifts are fun to get and just as much fun to give and the best ones are those that are given with the note that says “Just because I love you.”

When I think of giving my granddaughter a gift, it isn’t because I’m asking her to perform or work for it but simply for the sake of letting her know in a tangible way that I love her with the hope that she’ll find a bit of delight in it.

To me this is such a wonderful picture of the way God loves us and gives to us freely when we come to Him for the salvation of our souls. There we are, filled with imperfections, bad attitudes and some downright awful behaviour and the moment we express our sincere sorrow for them He forgives us. When we confess Jesus as Lord He then grants us the most extraordinary gift of salvation and places His Holy Spirit within us. On top of that He promises us eternal life in heaven.

Not a bad deal.

We give Him our faulty selves and He gives us “more than we can ask or think.”

And why is He so generous?

Just because He loves us.

‘When people work, their wages are not a gift. 
Workers earn what they receive. But people are declared righteous 
because of their faith, not because of their work.” 
Romans 4: 4-5

The gift of eternal life isn’t one He gives us because we’ve somehow earned it by doing good deeds or been a really nice person. God doesn’t require that we perform for our salvation any more than I require performance from my little granddaughter when I give her a gift. No, it’s not about earning His gift--it’s about understanding our need for it. The only condition on this gift of Himself to us is that we come to Him in faith with an attitude of humility and repentance regarding our sin; seeking and receiving His forgiveness; recognizing Jesus Christ is the way to God.

Salvation isn’t about crushing demands of religious performance. It’s simply about recognizing Jesus Christ died to atone for our sins, was resurrected, and this because God the Father and Christ the Son  loved each one of us.

“But then God our Saviour showed us His kindness and love. 
He saved us, not because of the good things we did, 
but because of His mercy. He washed away our sins 
and gave us a new life through the Holy Spirit. 
He generously poured out the Spirit upon us because of what 
Jesus Christ our Saviour did. He declared us not guilty 
because of His great kindness.
 And now we know that we will inherit eternal life.” 
Titus 3: 4-6