Hover over Romans 1:20-22 for proof of God's existence, and over Matthew 5:27-28 for Judgment Day’s perfect standard. Then hover over John 3:16-18 for what God did, and over Acts 17:30-31 for what to do.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Life's Most Important Information...

"An aside, anyone who stands in the gap, fire fighter, soldier, police etc has earned a pass to heaven. They have seen hell, so all the rhetoric you post Ray means nothing in the service these people have purchased. If God can not grant grace to those that have served above and beyond cant find grace, then your "gospel" has no meaning, what so ever. Any Deity that cannot see the dedication and good works of these fine people, what ever their theological point of view, should not be worshiped." Icouldbe

You are correct. Deity that cannot see dedication and good works of "fine people" shouldn’t be worshipped. Our problem is that in our own eyes we may think of ourselves as fine people, but God's eyes, we are not. We are wicked criminals who have violated His moral Law.

He is perfect and demands moral perfection, and for you and I to say that He is not, is to make up a god that doesn’t exist. But when we acknowledge our sins and see God in truth--as the Law-giver and Judge, our "good" works are not seen as good works at all, but despicable attempts to bribe the Judge of the Universe--"God, I will give you my moral deeds, and in exchange You give me everlasting life." That’s a purchase.

Let's think about that for a moment. How much "above and beyond" must I serve to buy eternal life from God? How much "hell" do I need to endure to merit everlasting life? Does a Jew suffering in a Nazi concentration camp enough? How about a Frenchman suffering under the Nazis? How about a German who suffered for days on a battlefield and dying, after standing on a landmine?

How about an American suffering "hell" after being trapped in a car for hours because of some terrible accident? How about cancer sufferers? What about asthmatics? How much "hell" is necessary, and who is it that makes the determination that the suffering is finished--complete so that everlasting life can be granted? Is it the sufferer? Or is it God? If you say that it's God, then it certainly isn't the God of the Bible.

But the moment Jesus of Nazareth cried, "It is finished!" the suffering was complete. The debt was paid. The Law was satisfied and wicked sinners could have their case dismissed and allowed to live--not because we had done anything, but because the Judge is rich in mercy.

That's the good news of the Gospel--that no one needs to suffer anything to have their sins forgiven and find everlasting life, because God Himself provided the sacrifice. He became a Man and took the sin of the world upon Himself (see 1 Timothy 3:16).

When any human being--Jew, Gentile, black, white, rich, poor, Hindu, Moslem, Buddhist, or any religious person forsakes his own supposed "good works" and trusts in God's mercy through Jesus Christ, they find everlasting life. God immediately "imputes" His righteousness to you (He freely gives a right moral standing). This is what the Scriptures teach from beginning to end (the book of James speaks of works being the fruit of salvation, not the means to it).

Again, a man or woman receives everlasting life, not as payment for his good works, but as a gift of God (through imputed righteousness) by trusting in His mercy. Remember, the below verses are from a book written nearly 2,000 years ago, but they perfectly address the fallacy that works merit salvation.

Read them carefully, because your own salvation depends upon your understanding of this great truth. If you cling to your works and refuse God’s mercy, you will receive His fearful Justice. You have His promise on that:

"Now to a laborer, his wages are not counted as a favor or a gift, but as an obligation (something owed to him). But to one who, not working [by the Law], trusts (believes fully) in Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited to him as righteousness (the standing acceptable to God). Thus David congratulates the man and pronounces a blessing on him to whom God credits righteousness apart from the works he does: Blessed and happy and to be envied are those whose iniquities are forgiven and whose sins are covered up and completely buried" (Romans 4:4-7, Amplified Bible)