made good by doing bad

God doesn’t wait till we start doing good things before He saves us. In fact, He does the exact opposite. He uses the evil we do to expose us and save us. The first of these is the murder of Jesus Christ which He calls a sacrifice.

Not A Typo

It would seem that such a thing is impossible. I mean really, its one thing to say that someone who used to do evil leaves the evil behind and starts doing good. That is more acceptable, believable. It is the truth that someone who does bad things must stop doing those things when he becomes good. But that’s like skipping ahead in the story. How did he even get started? How does she make her turn around from doing bad to being good? That’s what really matters. Which is why it sounds ridiculous to say that it is through evil that an evil person is made good!! That makes no sense at all. So lets clarify then and maybe get even more scandalous. No one can can make himself good by doing evil.

(Ah you see. You begin to sit a little more comfortably. But it’s a false security.) Here is the scandalous part: it is God that makes you good using the evil you have done.

God Uses Your Sin

Everyone knows and maybe has heard about how God is a just and fair God. He kills those who do bad things and rewards those who do good things. I say ‘kills’ because He is God. He is not your local judge or official. Those guys can only punish. Matthew 10:28 God is able to see how even the “smallest” sin destroys everything. So He knows that even the “littlest” sin is punishable by death.

Look deep into your own life at the places where you’ve messed things up a lot. You may be able to see that it all began with a very little teeny weeny lie you told someone else or chose to believe about yourself. Who is it that deserves His reward then? Everyone on earth has done something bad at least once. In fact, God has judged the whole earth before Genesis 7:4. So now you see why what I am saying sounds so ridiculous. How can a God who kills those who do bad things now turn around to use those same bad things they did to save them?

To Win You Over

Perhaps you had not heard till today that God is a God of Justice. But you are more likely to have heard that God is a God of Love. So what is an all loving God to do when He also knows just how bad you and I screwed up? He has to be able to show us just how bad we’ve screwed up and also save us at the same time. You see, He can’t just ignore what we’ve done. That would not win us over into doing good and it would not be love. That would be like if I caught my child doing something bad and only told him its okay. It’s not okay and I’ve probably just guaranteed that he’s going to repeat the same bad thing again.

How then do you win someone over and forgive them at the same time? Romans 5:20, James 4:6 Well, you do what God did. He laid His Life down. He never left me. He stood there while I stabbed Him over and over till I began to see the horror of my crimes. Then after I had killed Him, my hands bloody, still holding the knife, He tells me that I was only able to kill Him because He allowed me do it. I committed murder but He calls it His sacrifice.

Through love, He transforms my act of murder into sacrifice. By His death, He has swallowed up my sin in love. He did all this so that I could see just how bad my sins are and also just how much He loves me. This is what drives men and women to truly take that first step away from evil and start doing good. They have to see their evil deeds as evil but they also have to know there are loving arms waiting to embrace them when they turn around. This always, always means that the Lover has to let Himself suffer miserably and then die.

It’s In The Book

So is this what the Bible says? Joseph spoke in prophecy to his brothers when he told his brothers that God had used their evil deeds to do good Genesis 50:20. Jesus called Himself the good shepherd and goes on to say repeatedly that He lays down His life John 10:11, 15, 17-18. Paul says the same thing in Romans and it sounded so crazy that he had ask and answer the following question Romans 6:1-4. This was the first sermon that Peter preached Acts 2:22-24, 36-38. Even David says that everything he did wrong was against God Psalms 51:1-4.

If I say that, “I did not kill Jesus,” then I should remember that the even in the old testament, the sacrifice could only cover the sins of the one who offered it. That is, if I say I did not participate in the murder of Jesus Christ, then I cannot partake in the reconciliation that comes through His sacrifice. So that today when I go to God and in prayer confess to Him my murder, He replies by saying, “Are you talking about my sacrifice?” And when I believe Him, these words break my heart every time.

“… Morn­ing by morn­ing He Awak­ens; He Awak­ens my ear to hear as those who are taught.”
- Isaiah 50:4

Wanna reach out and ask me some ques­tions? Or do you want clar­i­fi­ca­tion on some­thing writ­ten here? If so, write me a let­ter. I’d love to hear from you and I’ll respond. I bet your hon­est ques­tion will pro­duce insights that will ben­e­fit other read­ers.