condemed already

John 3:18

Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

John 3:36

He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.

Preachers of the Gospel get accused all the time of “judging” people. However, the fact of the matter is, folks are “condemed already”. It is not my judgement they are judged by. They don’t need me to judge them, they are already judged according to God’s judgement. We are all measured against God’s standard, and found wanting.

Imagine a fellow who is very generous, kind, and well thought of. He does all sorts of really great things for people and is an all around great guy. For whatever reason, one day he commits murder. When he is arrested and goes before the court for judgement, it won’t be for the good things he has done, it will be for the crime he has committed.

The same is for us. We will not stand before God on Judgement day for all the good things we have done.

We will stand before God because we have broken His commandments.

We have lied, and so we will be judged as liars. We have stolen, so we will be judged as thieves. We have coveted, we have blasphemed, we are adulterers and murderers at heart.

There is no way we can save ourselves or ever be “good enough” to make up for our sins. We are utterly guilty and condemed.

However, there is GOOD NEWS. Our debt has been paid! Jesus took our place and died for our sins. He paid the fine for us. Because of who He is and as perfect, sinless sacrifice, He is the only one who ever could. He then rose again in victory over sin and death.

See, I’m not out saying I’m better than anyone else. No, I’m not in a place to judge. I’m just telling folks about God’s standard and the fact is, I’m in the same boat and in need of the Savior as much as they are. I’m just telling folks about the truth I’ve found.

All I know is, I was blind, and now I can see.


Forgiveness is NOT about avoiding “punishment”.

Forgiveness is all about rebuilding relationship.

When I break God’s law, I can seek His forgiveness and with Him, the eternal slate is wiped clean because of Jesus. It is Jesus who bore God’s wrath and took my punishment for me, and God has promised to remember my sins no more.

But, all too often, this can lead us to think forgiveness should wipe away ALL consequences as well. We then make the mistake of believing that God is punishing us for our sins, when we are merely reaping the fruit we have sown.

There is always damage from transgression. If I do something to violate another person’s trust, I can repent and seek forgiveness.

Forgiveness is the first step in rebuilding the relationship with that person, but it will take time to regain trust and see full restoration.

In addition to trust, I will still have to face all the temporal consequences of my actions.

If I have broken man’s law, then I will still have to face man’s judgment system.

If I have abused and not taken care of my body, then I will have to deal with the possibility of disease and/or disability.

If I have sinned against another person, then I may never regain the same level of relationship I had.

If my sin has caused death, then I, and others, will have to deal with the loss.

Follow up from Getting What You Deserve