[Editor's note: Beyond Sunday is a Monday refresher to carry you through the week.]

Focus Verse of the Week

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

Commentary

When we were without strength and were powerless to save ourselves (in God's own chosen time), Christ died for the ungodly - for sinners. He came to save, not the righteous, but to "save his people from their sins."

The great love of Jesus is now shown to us. If "rarely will anyone die for a righteous man," who would die for the ungodly? Yet perhaps someone might die for a good man. The world had instances of those who would die for their friends. The "righteous" man is one who is regarded as being fair; the good man is benevolent.

God's love is not like human love because Christ died, not for friends, but for enemies. It was while we were yet sinners that he died for us. The argument is: If while we were yet sinners, God loved us so much that Christ died for us, how much more now shall we, having been justified (freed from sin) by His blood be saved from the displeasure of God. And this came because He died for us. The main point is that "Christ died for us."

As sinners, we are the enemies of God, rebels, under his divine displeasure. Through the gospel of the Crucified Redeemer, we obtain peace with God. We turn to him, and are reconciled to him, obtaining forgiveness through faith. God is not reconciled to us, but we to him. His love ever shines, and is shown in his gospel. He is ever ready to pardon, and when we cease our rebellion, and come to him, through Christ, because of mercy, He receives us.

(Adapted from The People's New Testament.)

A Thought to Keep

God has already proven His love for us. You don't need to wonder or worry that you're "too bad" or "too messed up." Christ died for the rebels... and that's all of us.