Here is an excerpt of my book The Tales of Larkin: Hawthorn’s Discovery. In it Hawthorn and we learn a very important spiritual lesson.
The meeting with the elders and nobles had been over almost two hours when Tobin came in to report the elders’ decision.
“Do they support us?” Charlock wanted to know.
“Well, they aren’t willing to send a Ranger troop with us, but they have prayed for our success. We have permission to take all the supplies and equipment we think we might need, and word is being sent to all the Rangers and guards in the Refuge to see if any might want to volunteer to go with us.”
“That’s wonderful!” Charlock had a surprised tone in his voice. “That’s a great deal more than I expected.”
“Do you think we’ll get some volunteers?” Hawthorn wanted to know.
“Hmm,” Tobin said thoughtfully, “I think it would be safe to count on at least five.”
“Five!” Hawthorn said excitedly, “Do you really think so?”
“I will be very surprised if we don’t get at least that many. There are a fair number of former Renegades among the Makerians, and most of them would give a lot to try to make right some of the wrongs in their past.”
“So they can go to the Maker’s home when they die?”
“No, young one. When someone is ready to make Jehesus Lord, part of doing that is trusting completely that when Jehesus suffered and died, his death paid the full price for all of your sins. So when these former Renegades made the choice to trust in the Lord Jehesus, to repent of their sins, and become his followers, every one of their past sins was paid for by the blood of Jehesus. The Maker forgave them, made them His children, and gave them the right to live with Him and the Lord Jehesus in heaven forever. The sacrifice of the Lord Jehesus was so perfect and so precious to the Maker that, not only are all of their past sins forgiven, but any sin they commit in the future is forgiven also, as long as they hold fast their trust in Jehesus firm to the end.”
“But if that’s true,” Hawthorn asked, “why are they so anxious to make up for what they’ve done? If the Maker’s forgiven them, then they should forgive themselves.”
“It’s not a matter of forgiveness, young one. It’s a matter of responsibility and duty. Even though the Maker may forgive our sins, there are still consequences that we must face. If you steal something, the Maker can forgive you, but you still have to deal with the consequences of your theft. The people from whom you stole are still without their possessions. True repentance requires that you give back what you stole, or if you can’t, then you work to make restitution.
“Hawthorn, some of these former Renegades participated in ambushes and attacks on innocent people. Some of the people they killed; others they captured and made slaves. If you were one of these former Renegades and had given your life to do the Maker’s will in every area of your life, and you had the chance to go back and try to free some of those slaves, would you volunteer?”
“Yes, I would have to,” Hawthorn answered thoughtfully.
“I think we can count on some volunteers,” Tobin said confidently.
Making Jesus Lord brings with it commitment and responsibility. We no longer live for ourselves. We live for Him. It’s not about earning your way to heaven. It’s about understanding what it means to have a King.