Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Lent: Day Thirty-five ~ Salvation

Joshua 24:15 (NIV) "But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD."

Salvation

I have good news for you, people. The past couple of weeks I’ve written about the renewal of your spirit, I talked about serving the Lord, the commandments of the Lord, praise and worship of the Lord and so many other richly rewarding posts, but today I bring great news, Salvation! It is free, not earned, nor bought or achieved by any works that your physical body can do, it is FREE, given with the blood of the cross.

I may come off a little crass in saying serve, praise, worship and be a part of a church. I think I make it sound like that’s your only way into heaven. It is not so, all these posts are for the committed Christian who understands what it means to serve our great and mighty God. We don’t serve because it will BRING us closer to God; we serve because it helps us FEEL closer to God.

Jesus calls us to be more than a mere Christian in word. If you call yourself a Christian you need to know what it means to be Christlike ie. a Christian. But if you’re a non-believer and searching for the peace within your body and feel that there is a higher power governing you, you need to meet my friend Jesus Christ.

I’ve have a few friends who say they won’t serve such a cruel God, who maims and kills and destroys but they see all His blessed goodness and would rather call the goodness by another name. Can I ask you something? When you were a kid and you defied your mother and she disciplined you, did you hate her? Did you turn away from her? Stop loving her? No, not often.

God is like that. When we sin, sure He disciplines us but by His saving grace we are forgiven. That is not to say that once you become a Christian you carry on like nothing has happened spiritually to you. You don’t drink booze, lay around reading and believing, sin and keep on sinning some more because God will save you.

I know a few people who will believe in God and all the testimony in the Old Testament but won’t believe Jesus is the Son of God. They’ll believe God parted the sea, they’ll believe he wiped out humans on the earth and saved the animals via Noah, they’ll believe a man resided in the belly of a whale, but they won’t believe in the Immaculate Conception?

“Since no man is excluded from calling upon God the gate of salvation is open to all. There is nothing else to hinder us from entering, but our own unbelief.” ~ John Calvin

To be Christian, you believe that the blood of Christ was shed for you, a sinner among men. You’re not going to become a Christian just because it is a phase you’re going through. You’re going to become a Christian because you feel empty inside; you feel like something is missing and you sense that there IS a power out there that can fill the emptiness. Salvation! You become saved by grace from carnal sin by the hanging on the cross of God’s Son.

Christians are called to serve the Lord. We feel a need to do good, help others, attend church, praise and worship; it is part of our spiritual Christian growth. But to others who don’t know Him who want to know Him, salvation is yours for the asking and receiving. God extends His hand out to you, sends a comforter by way of the Holy Spirit, and washes you in the Blood of Christ so you too feel changed spiritually.

When this happens to you, you no longer hang onto just reading and believing. You want to take ACTION, not because it brings you closer to heaven, or brings you closer to God, but because you can sense the power of God in you and this new spiritual growth calls out to you and propels you into action. You crave being closer to God! All the reading and believing in the world will not bring you into a closer relationship with God, action FOR and TOWARDS God, will.

Through salvation, the will of God becomes evident. You won’t miraculously stop sinning, but you have a clean slate FROM your sin to begin anew. You will STRIVE to be Christ-like meaning you recognize any and all of your sin and bring it to Jesus. Only He can wash away the unclean sin.

Yes, we are all sinners and fall short of the Glory of God but salvation is the saving grace, through Jesus Christ. Read and believe this, you CAN taste heaven and see what awaits you. You CAN drink from the cup of salvation and walk eternally with Christ himself. You can take this to the heavenly bank and cash it; God awaits YOU!

“If you have to be reasoned into Christianity, some wise fellow can reason you out of it! If you come to Christ by a flash of the Holy Spirit so that by intuition you know that you are God’s child, you know it by the text but you also know it by the inner light, the inner illumination of the Spirit, and no one can ever reason you out of it.” A.W. Tozer



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