Saturday, September 01, 2007
SALVATION BY GRACE ALONE - A LIFE OR DEATH ISSUE
Lost unregenerate sinners left to their own natural reasoning will always come to the wrong conclusion concerning God’s way of salvation - “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Proverbs 16:25)
What way seems right to sinful man?
The way of morality, sincerity, and religious effort is what “seemeth right” to sinful man. We are taught all our lives by well-intentioned, misguided individuals that “good people go to heaven and bad people go to hell”, and because of the deceitfulness and wickedness of our evil hearts we believe it to be true - See Jeremiah 17:6.
This error in judgement is evidence of the moral and spiritual depravity of EVERY CHILD OF ADAM. By moral and spiritual depravity, I am not implying men are incapable of being moral, sincere, or highly religious, even to the point of appearing righteous (holy) to other sinners - “Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the (required by) law, blameless.” (Philippians 3:6)
“Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” (Matthew 23:28)
Matter of fact, men are quite capable and readily willing to do things to save themselves - “And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing SHALL I DO, that I may have eternal life?” (Matthew 19:16)
The problem lies in the fact God has NEVER told any sinner to DO ANYTHING by way of obedience to save themselves, keep themselves saved, or to even recommend themselves to God. You can’t find this error anywhere in the Word of God. Man might say it, but God has never said, “I’ve done my part, now you do your part.”
THAT’S WORKS SALVATION!
Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
The Apostle Paul couldn’t have stated it any more clearly. He told us NO ONE can be justified (declared legally righteous) by keeping the ten commandments. He went on to tell us the only way any sinner can be declared legally righteous before God was by Christ’s faithfulness to fulfill all the conditions of salvation by establishing the ONLY RIGHTEOUSNESS that demands the eternal salvation of all those for whom He established it at Calvary. The Lord Jesus Christ came here ON PURPOSE, not to save the righteous those who suppose themselves to be righteous), but to save SINNERS - “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
All of those Christ died for will in time come to see their exceeding sinfulness and they will rest upon Christ’s righteousness alone as their ONLY HOPE of salvation giving evidence that Christ redeemed them at Calvary.
By Richard Warmack