The Rock of Salvation

In 2005, I found myself separated from God by a wall of my own making. I knew right from wrong and had “believed” in God all my life. To many, I'm sure I looked like a timid, self-conscience girl who was too shy to do much sinning. But on the inside, my soul was full of rebellion and anger. Yet the whole time I thought I was a good person. I blamed others for my anger and sharp tongue, never stopping to think about the hurt my sin was causing those around me. Until one spring night when God opened my eyes to how sinful I truly was. When held up to His standard, I saw that I had lied, dishonored my parents, stolen and coveted many times. By God's word, I saw that I only had to lie once to be a liar and dishonor my parents once to be guilty of rebellion. God said He regarded rebellion as witchcraft and hated lying. Realizing for the first time who I really was, I knew I deserved Hell and for once in my life was grieved over my sins. But just as quickly as God showed me my sinfulness, He showed me His grace. All the verses my parents lead me to memorize throughout childhood came rushing into my mind crying out how God would save me if I would only believe on His Son, Jesus. And I did. With those verses still ringing in my heart I believed God would save me simply for believing Jesus' blood was enough to cleanse my sin just as His word said. From that moment on, God gave me a repentant, tender heart changing me to be like Him from the inside out.

The beautiful truth is God offers this salvation to everyone alive today. But just as I went so long blinded to my sinfulness, too many make the same error of thinking they are good enough to enter Heaven or that God treats sin as lightly as we do. But that's not what God says. To give us an idea of how good someone has to be to get to Heaven, God gave us His law, particularly the Ten Commandments. Let's take a look at some of them:

Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” (Exodus 20:7)

Have you ever used the name of God or Jesus in a careless way or to express shock? God said He will not hold anyone guiltless for using His holy name that manner.

Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” (Exodus 20:12)

Regardless of what kind of parents you had, God commands us to honor them. To dishonor them – even once – is rebellion, which God puts on the shelf with witchcraft. (1 Samuel 15:23)
Ye have heard that it was said of them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment...” (Matthew 5:21-22)

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.” (Exodus 20:17)

This commandment is addressing when we secretly desire what someone else has. Coveting is a slap in the face of God, as it shows we are not thankful for what He has given us. It also shows we value our happiness over our neighbor, which breaks Jesus' command to love our neighbor as ourselves. The New Testament further defines coveting as idolatry, which breaks the first commandment of having no other gods. (Colossians 3:5 and Exodus 20:3)
If you answered yes to all the above then you are a rebellious, coveting, blaspheming idolater in heart. And this is just six of the Ten Commandments! Since you have pleaded guilty to breaking God's law on multiple accounts God can only do what any good and just judge would do. He is going to sentence you to the penalty these crimes deserve which is death and eternity in Hell. (Psalm 9:17, Psalm 55:15, Luke 16, Romans 5:12-21, Romans 6:23, Romans 7, James 1:15, 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9).

But instead of giving us our due, the divine Judge did an unthinkable legal move to save us from ourselves. He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to become a man. Born to a Jewish woman, Jesus would have been wholly acquainted with the Mosaic Law and what God required of a man before He could be counted righteous. And He did it! Jesus was the first human to live up to each of the Ten Commandments and fulfilled them perfectly giving Him a spotless legal record. But instead of using this innocence for Himself, Jesus entered God's courtroom and asked to take our place on death row. He traded His clean record for our criminal one. Jesus then bore our death sentence by dying on the cross. God then proved His satisfaction with Jesus' payment for our sin by raising Him from the dead and crowning Him with victory over sin, death and Satan. Every sin you and I have ever committed is able to be sealed in heaven's court records as paid in full by the blood of Christ. But only if we believe it. Just as a pardoned felon is not truly free until he believes it enough to walk out of the courthouse a free man, so Christ's payment for us doesn't free until we believe it enough to walk out of sin's prison into God's arms. It's not accomplished through any prayer we pray, or some religious ritual we preform, but by calling on the name of the Lord.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13)

That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” (John 3:15-18)

For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” (Romans 5:6-10)

God then gives us the assurance of our salvation by sending the Holy Spirit to dwell in our hearts and guide and keep us in the way of the Lord. 

For as many are lead by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:” (Romans 8:14-16)

God is a perfect and holy God whose mercy is as sure as His justice. To those who refuse to believe on Christ, a real Hell awaits them for their rebellion against God. But to those who believe on the Son a new heart is given and they are changed from the sons of Satan to the sons of God. To walk with Christ is not a guarantee that trouble will never come. In fact, Jesus promised that how the world treated Him is how it will treat His followers. But to be free, oh, to be free from the angry and defilement that once stained my soul is worth anything I may have to suffer for Jesus. To know my sin has is gone and forgiven forever in the sight of God is the most wonderful thing in the world and I pray it is a world you will know as well!

1 comment:

  1. Isn't it amazing how the walls that separate us from the love of Christ and eternal life are those of "our own making"? Thanks so much for sharing this? there is nothing life "God's amazing grace"!