"When we were still without strength..."
Text: Romans 5:6
AN ASTUTE MIND AND A GREAT HEART
Sometimes, Paul comes through more as a theologian with a great mind, rather than a pastor with a great heart of love. If this is our understanding, then we labour under a terrible misconception. Paul was as much touched by the love of God as “the beloved disciple John the evangelist”. It was the apostle Paul who penned the immortal words describing and extolling the virtue of Christian love in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
TOUCHING ON THE SUBJECT OF GOD’S LOVE
Paul deeply appreciated the love of God displayed. He wrote with a deep sense of gratitude these moving words.
“For when we were still without strength,
in due time Christ died for the ungodly.”
1. When we were still without strength
a) This is Paul’s special way of describing just how weak man is!
b) Without strength may be understood better along these lines:-
i) Man is without strength because of the prevalence of sin in his life.
ii) Man is described as “without strength” because he is intrinsically weak.
iii) Man is indeed without strength, because he lacked the power that comes from faith.
iv) We were plain “ungodly” in the sight of the Lord.
2. Christ died for the ungodly
a) Christ died for those who did not know Him.
b) He died for all sinful mankind- “the ungodly”.
3. God’s love painted on a grim and dark background
God did not send His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to die for the righteous and the godly. Jesus gave up his life so that He might redeem the ungodly!
Did God anticipate that the ungodly might fail to reciprocate the sacrifice of Christ? The answer is a decided “Yes!” God knew just how hardened, and how bent on sin, the human being is capable of! Nevertheless, God wanted man to know just how much He loved him. The Holy Spirit would lovingly apply the truth of God’s love to the heart of each and every individual person. It is up to the individual to respond.