At the Rio Olympics in 2016, two Olympic athletes made headlines for coming to each other’s aid in the 5000m race. New Zealand runner Nikki Hamblin had four laps to go when she stumbled. US runner Abbey D’Agostino was just behind her and hit the track too. Hamblin lay in the fetal position in pain, but D’Agostino jumped up and pulled her to her feet. Moments later D’Agostino fell again, agony evident on her face. At this point, Hamblin stopped running and pulled her up. The women finished last, together.
Why is it that such stories are so stirring to us? I believe it is because it goes completely against human nature to help one’s enemy.
Fortunately, helping One’s enemy is very much within God’s nature. In Romans 5:10, we read that “while we were God’s enemies we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son.” If God loved us enough that He sent His only Son to save us while we were still sinners, how much more will He do for us now that we are His sons and daughters?
If you’re still stuck in condemnation, trying to earn God’s approval, be free. He cannot save us as sinners only to reject us as saints. No. The love of God is absolute.
We’ve been speaking about righteousness for a while now, and most of us long to live out our faith in a manner pleasing to God, but to do so we need to quit gritting our teeth and start receiving His grace.
It’s only through my relationship with God and my time spent in the Word that my thinking begins to change. After that my behavior changes and suddenly, through relationship rather than through works, I begin living a life worthy of the calling I’ve received.
Romans 5:8 – 12
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.”