by Kathi Pelton
The uncompromising message that I heard as a young believer that taught foundational truths, holiness, and freedom from sin and death has often been lost in the desire to let the world know that we walk in love. Yet, no one had to water down the truth that brought conviction of sin when I came to know the Lord. Sin was devastating my life, and the love found within the message of freedom from sin and a God who would die to redeem me from it was greater love than I had ever imagined possible!
Somehow many have concluded that any message that brings real conviction or exposes sin is not love. Yet, there is more love than we can imagine in the message of an invitation into freedom. The truth that the wages of sin are death and hell is now a politically incorrect message, yet it is the truth that Jesus died for; the one that saved my life and the lives of countless men and women.
The teaching of universalism is that there is ultimately no hell, no final judgement for any individual. There are those who tell us that it is unloving to proclaim the truth that rejecting Christ’s payment for sin will result in eternal separation from God. Such ideas have the appearance of kindness, but they are merely a recipe for watered-down Christianity.
Hell is real, but it was not designed for men; instead, it was meant for Satan and his demon army. Jesus made a way, through His death on the cross, for every man and woman to be redeemed, because He paid the price for our sin. We have the opportunity to receive the free gift of salvation and righteousness before our God. It is amazing that God has not forced His love upon us, but has given us free will to accept it or to reject it. Love offers a choice; not a compromised choice, but real freedom to chose.
When I was a new believer I understood these important truths, but unfortunately there were not a lot of true “fathers and mothers” who would come alongside us new sons and daughters in order to nurture us. Many of us who had chosen Christ and received the gift of eternal life still struggled with deeply wounded souls. I was one who carried scars from my childhood and from the many bad choices I had made that brought great harm to my young life.
Though I had experienced the amazing love of God during my salvation experience, rigid “Do no sin!” messages—apart from the healing of my soul to replace the orphan spirit I carried—merely reinforced an unhealthy demand to perform and set me up for failure.
We are seeing a wonderful shift in this season, and messages of love, healing, intimacy, our true identity in Christ, loving family, and generations walking together are now nurturing new converts and healing wounded souls. However, this does not negate the need for us to understand our hopelessness outside of Christ. We must understand the message of holiness and healing found in Jesus.
What I see happening in the Spirit is an intermingling of the message of uncompromising holiness, true conviction of sin, and Jesus redeeming men from the penalty of sin (which is death and hell) with the message of intimacy, family, sonship, identity, grace and His “reckless love.” It’s “not either/or” but “both/and.”
Either message without the other brings about unbalanced living. One demands holiness apart from healing, and the other creates compromise that makes people “feel good”; but they are being comforted within the constraints of their captivity. We need both! We need holiness and we need healing, we need uncompromising truth and unconditional love, we need to displace the enemy and then fill that place with the true identity that God created men to live in.
There is an intermingling of holiness and healing! There is an intermingling of conviction of sin and healing of hearts! There is an intermingling of uncompromising truth and intimacy! And there is an intermingling of foundational teachings and His reckless love that creates true disciples that know they are sons and daughters.
This will release light to those caught in darkness. It is the message the world longs to hear and the balm that souls need to receive. It is new wine poured into new wine skins. One without the other causes the wine skins to burst and the wine to be wasted.
Let us enter into a yielded life that allows the Spirit of the Lord to intermingle the fullness of all the aspects and characteristics of God within our lives. May a bride who is both holy and healed emerge in this hour!
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