Read: Romans 5:6-11
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
God’s Love Saves Sinners
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Have you ever been stranded? Maybe your car went into the ditch on a snowy road, and you had to wait for someone to arrive and pull you out. Maybe a flat tire left you stranded on the shoulder of a busy interstate with no spare. Maybe Dad or Mom forgot to pick you up from practice or a friend’s house. If you’ve ever been stranded, you know it can be a pretty helpless feeling. You might be far from home. You might even be in a bit of danger. There isn’t a whole lot you can do about it but wait for someone to come save you.
We realize what an awesome God we have when we are reminded how helpless we are to save ourselves. Paul writes, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” When we come into this world, by nature we are stuck spiritually speaking. We are stranded and powerless. There isn’t anything we can do to reach out to God.
So God, in his great love, reaches out to us. Into a world so undeserving of his love, God sent Jesus—the One and only One who deserves his love. Jesus himself said, “The Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost” (Luke 19:10). Jesus had all the “tools” necessary to save us. Perfect words, perfect attitudes, perfect kindness, perfect contentment, perfect patience. He did all the work necessary to save us—living, dying, rising, ascending.
But God didn’t stop there. He came to you personally through his Word and baptism to bring you faith. Today he gives people who love you enough to tell you more about God, so that your faith can grow and become even stronger.
When your car is stuck, and you are stranded somewhere at night, it’s a pretty amazing feeling to see the headlights of your “rescue” vehicle pull up behind you. You were stranded. But help has arrived! You are safe. Think of that when you remember Jesus and what he has done. You were stranded. But because of God’s great love for you, help has arrived. In Jesus, you are safe.
Jesus, Helper of the helpless, we’re so glad and thankful that you came to save us. Lead many more to know that you are their help and Savior, too. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- How might someone feel if they are stuck or stranded?
- What did Jesus do to help us when we were stuck and helpless spiritually?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- Explain why it could only be grace—undeserved love—that led Jesus to come and save us.
- Why is it so critical for us to tell other people about Jesus?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- Evaluate this statement: When we live how God wants, we are paying him back for what he has done for us.
- Identify three practical ways that you can show thanks to God for his love this week.
Hymn: CW 576:3 – Spread, Oh, Spread the Mighty Word
Tell of our Redeemer’s love,
Who forever does remove
By his holy sacrifice
All the guilt that on us lies.