Devotion: Jesus Friend of Sinners

By: Francis Banda

You know you love someone when everything inside you longs or yearns to see the best in them; when your soul, body, and mind absolutely care for that particular person without any condition attached for that yearning and caring to exist.

The Cross says it All
The Cross says it All

Love sees beyond everything. It zeroes in and embraces the ordinary being.

We all have the propensity to know and experience love because we were made in the likeness of God. The Almighty God formed us from the dust of the earth and gave us the life we love so much out of His breath. This is what makes us God conscious because when God breathed into us, He poured His spirit into us. God’s Spirit is His nature and His nature is LOVE.

The Bible teaches us in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, that “Charity (LOVE) suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil; Rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; Bears all things, believeth all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Charity never fails: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.”

Romans 3:21-25 reveals just how big God’s love is for all mankind. Apostle Paul, through the abundant revelation of the Holy Spirit, says:

“But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned and come short of the GLORY of God; being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God: To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that He might be just, and justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”

Even though, man was made God conscious, he has fallen short of the glory of God through his sinful nature. All men have sinned, all are constantly in sin the obvious happens when we fall short of the glory of God; we are separated from His kingdom. Adam was thrown out the Garden of Eden because he sinned against God. Did God Love him? Of course, He did. The Love that God has for us is truly an Agape love.

Jesus is Indeed the Truest Maifestation of Love
Jesus is Indeed the Truest Manifestation of Love

Our little imaginations and intellect cannot even begin to comprehend how deep and true God loves us. We could only wish that we were capable of bearing such love through the grace that God has profusely poured on us from the time we were conceived in our mother’s womb. There is simply no means to measure or define God’s unconditional love for us.

I rejoice knowing this, For God so loved the world that He gave His only son to be offered up as a sacrifice, to be slain before the foundations of the earth that through the shedding of His holy and cleansing blood, ALL mankind might be healed, saved, liberated, and reconciled with the Father in Heaven. The fact that God sent Jesus Christ to save us from the fiery dungeon thus to come, and restored us into His kingdom is staggering. All men have fallen short of His glory, but God sees beyond the fall, beyond our faults and sick state of mind to lift us out of this depraved world through Grace and by the abundance of His AGAPE love.

The greatest honor for all mankind is to be called God’s friend. Oh!how wonderful it must have been for Lazarus to be called a Friend of Jesus. Yes, Jesus Christ desires that we establish a relationship with Him that He might lift us up into His Father’s bosom and transform us into heavenly citizens. He wants us to become His friends. God loves us deeply, regardless of our transformation and restoration into the Kingdom of God, or whether we are so stooped in sin so much that we forget to tell right from wrong.

Friend
What more Can be Said?

Matthew 9:12, “But when Jesus heard that, He said unto them, they that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.” Christ came for all mankind but His TASK was to free the sinners from the grip that Lucifer placed upon their lives. His task is the same today. He is a Friend of Sinners and Blood Washed Believers alike.

The modern-day church is quickly falling short of the glory of God through our self-righteous and super-spiritual indignation. We have become a band of religious pipers and legalists who give a hundred percent in observing the law, the Sabbath, external appearances, and religious rituals than focusing on what really matters, which is a RELATIONSHIP with Jesus Christ.

In Matthew 11:16-19, Jesus Christ says, “To what, then, can I compare the people of this generation? What are they like? They are like children sitting in the marketplace and calling out to each other: We played the pipe for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge for you, and you did not cry. For John, the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The son of man came eating, and drinking and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and SINNERS.”

Yes! they were right. Jesus Christ is a friend of sinners but He does not condone sin. He longs to obliterate the sin that has corrupted what God so wonderfully and fearfully made in His own image and gave it dominion over the entire universe.

Man and not the devil because of the redemption that is in Christ Jesus has dominion over all the earth. He is a defeated thief and usurper. Everything has been made for and given to man. We can only inherit the universe that God gave us through the redemption that lies only in our friend Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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