Jesus Paid It All

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There is something innate in the human spirit that demands justice and acquittal.  We need to be made right.  Most often we try to be made right through our actions.  Actions that condemn us require, instinctively, actions that acquit us.  That's why the common religion of today is, "I'm a pretty good person."  In their minds, they have been acquitted because their actions aren't as bad as the guy next to them.

Growing up, I was always very hard on myself.  I was very critical and even self-abusive, of no fault to my parents.  I knew that what I did was never good enough and that drove me to self-loathing.  I hated myself because I could never remove the guilt my wrong actions brought with them.  A spanking was justly given - and many did I rightly receive - but my spirit knew better: I was guilty.  So, I tried harder.  But when continual failure met even my best efforts, I became even more self-loathsome.

When I began to trust Jesus at the age of six, I became indebted to Him.  At times I loved Him, but usually I feared Him.  I was unsure of His love for me, though everywhere I turned I heard that "God loves you."  I had a lot for which to pay Him back; how could God love me when I still did wrong?

What Does God Require of Man?

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"Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before My eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow's cause.  Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.  If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be eaten by the sword; for the mouth f the LORD has spoken" (Isaiah 1:16-20). 
"Whoever has My commandments and keeps them, He it is who loves Me.  And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him" (John 14:21). 
"Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.  For this, 'You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not covet,' and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'  Love does no wrong to a neighbor; love therefore is the fulfillment of the law" (Romans 13:8-10).