“Whoever believes in me (Jesus) may have eternal life.”
Jesus doesn’t ask you to try harder, show up anywhere, or work your freedom. He knows you cannot do it on your own. So, God offers you this freedom as a gift. It’s not something you have earned or worked hard to receive. This gift is something God has, but desires to offer it to you.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
The bad news is that what we have tried up to this point [without Jesus] has not been successful. We might make it work for a time, or seem like we have it figured out for a season. Eventually, though, we realize the way we have tried to live life just ends in failure, pain, sorrow, and hurt. Even our best attempts seem to come up short.
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
The worst news is that [because of our sin] a penalty is owed. A price has to be paid, in order to make things right again. Unfortunately, we cannot pay the price ourselves. We have tried. But every time we try, it just seems like we incur more debt, make more mistakes, get ourselves in deep. We are simply bankrupt, with nothing of value or worth to offer God. Because of our current state, what we are due is not life, but death.
“For the wages of sin is death.”
But the good news of the gospel is that God did for us what we could not do for ourselves – pay for our sin. Jesus stood in our place [as a substitute] and took on the penalty of sin – the wrath of God toward sin [death]. In Jesus’ death and resurrection, God gave His grace to mankind. He provided a way for our sin to be forgiven and our relationship with Him to be restored. It is a free gift offered to all who believe on Jesus for salvation.
“But to all who did receive him [Jesus], who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
In His ultimate love and grace, God is offering you freedom. He is giving you a chance at new life. God has already done everything for you. You simply have to believe.