The reason is simple: Jesus gets all in our business and simply won’t get out of it. We, as rugged individualists, have a problem with Jesus’ meddling in our lives. It is not that we want to be aggravated with Him, but we all have areas of spiritual weakness we would rather not confront. Jesus does not allow us the option to go unbothered. It is inevitable that our pet sin will eventually be confronted by our study of the Scriptures. The question then becomes, will I surrender all? Sadly, most people will never lay it all at Jesus’ feet and give Him everything. Jesus made it clear that most of us will choose the easy way of the world over the difficult way of discipleship and true surrender to Him (Mt. 7:13-14). How then do we overcome this difficulty?
First, we must recognize our desperate condition without His atoning blood. Listen to the words of the apostle Paul concerning life before sanctification in Christ. In Ephesians 2:1, 5 he wrote, “And you…who were dead in trespasses and sins…even when we were dead in trespasses…” The picture is bleak indeed! When we are in our sins, we are DEAD! We will perish unless we repent (Lk. 13:3, 5). This truth brings us to the next step in moving from half-hearted devotion to complete surrender to Christ.
As Paul continued his letter to the Ephesians, we see the tremendous grace of God poured out on us in Christ. Look at the rest of the story Paul told. He “…made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved) and raised us up together…” God was not content to leave us in our state of spiritual death. Though He was well within His rights to leave us to flounder, His gracious nature moved Him to compassion. In Ephesians 2:4, Paul said it was because God is “…rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us.” God’s mercy, driven by His love, prompted Him to go to unthinkable lengths to extend forgiveness to fallen humanity. This is brought into even sharper focus when we further consider Paul’s words in Romans 5:6-8: “For when we were still without strength, *in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Finally, in view of our helpless condition and God’s unfathomable grace, the proper response is to live as one of the forgiven much. As the sinful woman in Luke 7:36-50, if we realize the lengths to which God has gone to save us while we were His enemies, we will live life at Jesus’ feet. Then and only then will we be empowered to truly surrender all to Jesus. “Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.” As John said, “We love Him because He first loved us” (1 Jn. 4:19). As the forgiven much, let us surrender all to Jesus!