I would guess that 95% of all religions teach that the ticket to Heaven requires some sort of good works or following religious rituals. When I explain the free gift of salvation, I am almost ALWAYS told something along the lines of, “I’ve always been taught in church [synagogue, mosque, temple, etc.] that I have to DO good things or be confirmed or baptized to get to Heaven. In the end, God weighs my good works against my bad behavior—I’m hoping I’ll get in.”
But—God’s Word teaches the exact opposite!
God’s Word teaches us that no one even desires Him for who He says He is [as He is as opposed to who we think He is,] thus, it is HIS Spirit who must draw them. Our situation is so bad that not only is one righteous, but no one can make themselves righteous. Thus—redemption is SOLELY by the grace of God.
“There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God.”Romans 3:10-11
“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:5-7
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9
Human religions have created the “good works” path. We want to believe that WE can do something to earn our salvation so we can avoid complete surrender to God. But, to believe this, we must also believe that God will grade our life on a curve; much like some teachers do in order to give the class a collectively higher score. But God does NOT do this if—-He is Who He says He is!
“You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.”Leviticus 19:2
God is innately holy, and His righteous standards are a reflection of His holy nature; thus, His purity sets the standard for our ability to have a relationship with HIM. While our human standards of righteousness are in conformity to the moral codes of prevailing cultural ideas; God’s standard for righteousness is not in conformity to any HUMAN moral standard! HIS standard comes from within His holy, uncreated self. ANY degree of unholiness violates the very nature of God. And…
…because WE are ALL sinners, our very presence is a violation of God’s nature.
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”Romans 3:23
Thus, anyone who has committed even one sin is incapable of a relationship with God because sin makes us spiritually dead—and a dead person can’t bring themselves back to life.
Where does this leave us?
We are perpetually anxious. THE ANXIETY MECHANISM VIDEO God’s loving plan for our helpless state is—in Jesus!
“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” Jesus died so we might live!2 Corinthians 5:21
God’s nature is absolute perfection and our nature is absolute depravity, and—the two can never be reconciled without absolute grace. It would be inconsistent with God’s nature [thus He wouldn’t be God] for Him to grade us on a curve and lower the consequences of sin in order to have a relationship with us. Much like “gravity” wouldn’t be what we know it is, if it didn’t operate within what we know it to be; e.g., you jump off a tall building, you will ALWAYS fall down—not up! If we believe in the laws of science, we should also believe in the spiritual laws of God—Who created science!
For years I believed that my goodness and my obedience to God’s commandments were enough to give me a relationship with Him. I believed God’s standards of righteousness were like mine and that He would conform His standard to mine! God’s solution wasn’t to violate His nature and lower His standard of righteousness; His solution was pure love—His death to give us life. When we accept THE GIFT OF SALVATION God brings up to His standard. Our eternal destiny is not graded on a curve—it’s pass or fail. Without Jesus, we don’t even get on the grading scale.
By God’s marvelous grace, we may claim the righteousness of God and have a relationship with Him for eternity.
To learn more about Kimberly Faith and the mission of Faith Strong, click HERE.
Out Now – Essential Faith, Volume II. Find it on Amazon by clicking HERE.