This is what God gave me today in his word:
Do you suppose, O man–you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself–that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? (Romans 2:3-4)
Here, Paul is warning the Romans against hypocracy but he’s also reminding them that being a Christian isn’t a “licence to sin”. As he will dress in more detail around chapters 5-6.
First, we must realize what being a Christian doesn’t mean. Being a Christian does not automatically entitle us to the ability to sin without consequence. As Paul puts it (in Romans chapter 6), we have died to the sin nature and even more importantly, we now live in Christ. Yes God is kind, and yes he is patient (more so than either of us can imagine). But God’s kindness does not mean we can “cash in” on it and run around sinning!
Second, we have to realize what being a Christian does mean. Being a Christian means being perfect. Being a Christian means we must live our whole entire lives perfectly, without sin. – Read Matthew 5:48 – Which is utterly impossible to do. – Being a Christian means that we realize we can not be what God wants us to be, and we, therefore, need to have faith in Jesus’ perfection on our behalf.
Third, we must understand what God’s kindness is. The purpose of God’s kindness is not to give us the ability to “sin freely”, but instead to lead us to repentance. But what exactly is God’s kindness? – Quite literally, the embodiment of God’s kindness (and in fact of God himself) is Jesus Christ. How is that? Because God’s kindness is perfectly demonstrated for us when Jesus died on the cross for us. Christ’s doing that wasn’t meant to let us sin and feel there was no consequence to it, it was to bring us to repentance for what we have done!
And that, right there, is the whole point of this post. – God gave his only son to die for us so that we could be forgiven. And that is, I believe, what Paul was getting at as well.
You are loved!