I’ve been working my way through a class on the book of Galatians. Paul found himself astonished that some believers had turned away from the gospel of grace and had taken on other forms of religiosity. The apostle writes in Ephesians 2:8-10,, that we are saved by grace, a gift of God, so that no man can boast. I wonder if we sometimes forget that our salvation doesn’t depend on us. It was and is a gift of from God that was born on the cross at Calvary.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
The more the lord reveals to me and the more I study I realize that we do indeed at times add to our salvation. What I mean is that we get to a point where it’s more about us and what we’re doing rather than remembering that we are saved because of what Christ has done for us.
The works that we do should be out of love for our savior and for his sacrifice for our sins. If we lose sight of that fact then the actions we take become convoluted and more about being seen and pleasing others. Guilty of that one.
If salvation was about what man could do then there wouldn’t have been a need for Christ and it wouldn’t be about God’s grace at all. Grace is an unmerited a of love. Got into a disagreement with another pastor a couple years ago when I said that we are all horrible people to God. I was referring to our sinfulness and our vain attempts at trying to make ourselves as righteous before God.
The Bible declares the best we can in our deeds is filthy rags to the Lord (Isaiah 64:6) Our righteousness stems from Christ life, death, and resurrection alone. It’s not ours to claim. We cannot to or subtract from the work of Christ. It’s God’s grace that gives it to us, and because of Christ we are declared righteous before God. Christ’ actions are attributed to us. He bore the weight of our sins so that we could stand before God one day declared righteous.
Some people struggle with guilt and shame their entire lives. They seem to struggle with the same things over and over again. My thoughts are drawn back to forgiveness. I believe that every Christian around the world understands that they have been forgiven, they understand it, but I feel few actually accept it. We sometimes struggle to fully comprehend just what Christ did. What he did was paid our bill in full. Our debts were wiped clean and we now can take on the righteousness of Christ because of Christ.
So today, remember that if you have accepted Christ you are forgiven by the grace demonstrated on the cross for the atonement of your sins. We cannot earn it, or buy it, but we can accept the free gift that is offered, and then out of our love for Christ go into this dark world and spread the love, joy, and peace of the gospel.
Remember that Brenda and I love you, and that God does too.