So there’s no transaction between you and God necessary for you to enjoy eternal life in perfect relationship with the Creator who loves you.
Although a lot of churches want to teach grace, they kind of present it as a bargain between you and Jesus: He let Himself be punished for your sins, so now you owe Him everything. His part was dying in your place, and your part is living for Him.
It’s a functional explanation of what is supposed to be Good News, but it isn’t the Gospel. It’s a transaction. A business arrangement. And, as we explored yesterday, you don’t make transactions with your kids — and God is our Father.
Jesus addressed this in the parable of the Prodigal Dad. (Luke 15:11)
The no-good little brother demanded the inheritance he expected to receive when his father died, while his father was still alive. He selfishly told dad to drop dead, took the money, and wasted it on “riotous living,” according to the KJV.
When he was broke, sick and starving, he decided to go home and just beg his father for a position as a hired hand. He wouldn’t presume to ask to be called a son after what he had done …
… but that’s just silliness! What father would ever agree to that? The old man was looking out for the boy, ran and greeted him, threw a party — and he wouldn’t even hear of the brainless idea of taking the boy on as an employee.
The Prodigal Father had forgiven the boy before he even left, and any idea of a business transaction to reconcile them was ridiculous to him. For the Father’s part, they were already reconciled. It just needed the hard-headed boy to recognize it.
Don’t let anyone tell you that now Jesus has paid the debt for your sins you must “go and sin no more” to seal the bargain. There’s no bargain on His part. He loves you and always will love you, because you’re His precious child.
No transaction is necessary.