One of my favorite passages of scripture is 1 Corinthians 13:8 “Love never fails”. God loves us. No matter what we do to Him or to His people – no matter how badly we hurt Him. He still loves us because love never fails. Love forgives. Love moves on past the offense. Just like it was never there. Just like it never happened.
Consider the woman in John 8:2-11 who was caught in the act of sin. When Jesus calls upon the religious leaders who are without sin to cast the first stone at the woman they drop their stones and leave. With no judgment or condemnation, Jesus sends the woman on her way to sin no more. The root of all dysfunction in this world is sin. We might sin differently, but we are all sinners, nonetheless. Jesus did three things for the sinner.
First, he loved us in our sin. Not the sin but certainly the sinner. There is nothing that we can do that will make God stop loving us. God loves us in Christ – just as we are and with a love that never fails and never gives up. In the love of Christ there are no stones, no pain, and no hurt. Just a perfect love that will never hurt you and will never leave you.
The second thing that Christ does for sinners is free us from our sins. By the blood of Christ we have been released of the bondages of our sins. He accepts us and frees us just as we are! He will accept us and free us when we call out to him. Those chains that have had a grip on us for so long are gone. Because of the blood of Christ we are victorious over the sins and the trials of life. Through His death, burial, and resurrection, Jesus is able to free the sinner from their sins – those that are willing to receive him.
The third thing that Jesus does for the sinner is He lifts us out of our sins and gives us a new dimension of living. In John 12:32, Jesus said to his disciples “I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me”. Jesus was lifted up on the cross to lift sinners out of their sins. Everywhere that the gospel is preached in truth, with urgency, it lifts sinners out of their sins and into the glorious forgiveness that God has to offer.
It is much easier to forgive the sins of others after the realization that we are all sinners. Jesus gives us an example of how to love a sinner without judgement and condemnation.
“By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35