Easter is such a great time to celebrate the grace of God. During our special Easter service yesterday, I was reminded that God’s grace has the ability to radically transform lives more than any program or formula. We are transformed into a new creation in Christ, reborn, made holy and blameless before our Creator (Colossians 1:22). We cannot produce rebirth on our own—it can only come by the mercy, love, and power of God! The love of God can empower you to change for real.
In my last post, I shared my testimony and some practical ways on how you can receive the reality of the Cross for your life. When you can understand all that God has done to restore you to Himself, as I did at age 17, it inspires you to make true change. Here are two keys that I have found within Romans 5, that reveal to me how to make supernatural change. Change that sticks!
Key 1: Understand the Love of the Father
6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:6-8)
God’s love exceeds the natural human ability to love. It’s difficult to understand the depth, length, height, and width of the love that our Heavenly Father has for us (Ephesians 3:18). When He sent His only Son to die on the cross on our behalf, we were still sinners- given over to selfishness and rebelliousness. While we were enemies of God, He reached out to us through the incarnation of His Son, whose very life was sacrificed for our sake. He loved us while we were still disobedient, self-absorbed, and even disinterested in Him. That kind of love can be difficult for us to understand in our humanness.
From the human nature, love looks like give and take. It looks like loving those that love you back, or loving those who are family or with whom you have history. The supernatural love of the Father is so powerful that even in our rebelliousness, He gave everything He had just so He could redeem us. He loved us enough to do whatever it took to restore our connection with Him. That sacrifice gives us access to a relationship with a God that continually transforms us.
Key 2: The whole truth of salvation
For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. (Romans 5:10)
I want to highlight the word “saved” here—in the Greek, the word used is sozo, which means “saved, healed, and delivered.” The death and resurrection of Jesus not only saved you from eternal separation from God, it meant that you could enter a full, abundant life spiritually, physically, and emotionally.
When I encountered the love of the Father at age 17, I knew that I could be saved from the consequences of my own sin. But I also began to understand that this new life also meant that I could walk out in purpose, fullness, and freedom.
Jesus’ sacrifice is so much more than entry into heaven—it means that when we die with Him, we can also be raised with Him into new life (Romans 6:4). This new life means we can receive healing in our bodies and in our hearts, obtain deliverance from mental and emotional oppression, and experience restored relationships with others. Now that is real change.
Equip yourself to walk out in the full understanding of God’s sacrificial love, and the wholeness of salvation through Jesus. Here are a few resources:
- HRock Church’s current teaching series, “Reconciliation,” will teach and equip you on the beauty of having a restored relationship to God and to others. Join us live online on Sunday mornings on HRock.TV, or watch Part 1 of the series here.
- In Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God, author and pastor Francis Chan shares on the power of the extravagant love of God to impact your life and your purpose.
- If you are pursuing personal deliverance, I encourage you to listen to “Deliverance,” a teaching series from HRock Church on the freedom you can obtain in Jesus!