Summary: We are all sinners! Our salvation is a gift and cannot be earned or deserved. Freedom from the bondage of sin!
March 14, 2018
Reading: Ephesians 2:1-10
Are You Good Enough?
Right from the get go, let me answer that title question. The answer is a resounding NO!
Will we ever be good enough? No! The most basic truth that we must accept about ourselves is that we are all SINNERS. Our salvation is NOT about being good enough; about how much WE have overcome or about how knowledgeable and devout we are. That is what Paul is trying to tell us.
Paul describes this world [it’s the same world today, you know] as being a world where “the sons of disobedience” are at the beck and call of the prince of the air – Satan. V 2
He goes on to say that we have all been there and some remain there, living in the lust of the flesh by nature children of wrath. V 3
Through the years, I have found that most Christians do not like to hear that truth. So many times, I’ve heard, “Pastor, I just don’t consider myself a sinner.” Or “I wish you’d not speak so much about sin.”
Well, just how are we to understand the grace and mercy of God until we can come to grips with the fact that we ARE sinners – You, Me and everyone of us. Jesus died on that cross because of my sins. Yet God loves me so much that He has provided this GIFT of mercy in His forgiveness of my sins. The other thing that we often struggle with is the fact that God loves every sinner – saved and unsaved equally. How is it that we sometimes think that we warrant more God’s love than the despicable and most vile sinner down the road? We cannot earn God’s love, it is a gift and it is equally available to every one of His creation.
The difference is that the saved are no longer “dead to sin” or dead in sin. By His mercy, God has granted us forgiveness and life eternal.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
Dead you say? Yes, stone cold dead. Not physical death but spiritual death!
“…but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:17 God speaks!
“Then the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die’.” Genesis 3:4 Satan speaks!
Who speaks the truth and who is the “father of lies”?
Spiritual death means separated from God. The unsaved spirit, (very soul) is set adrift in this world and headed for eternity in the underworld, at physical death. Unsaved means just that – unsaved. Can the unsaved be redeemed? YES indeed! Again, not by being good but by accepting Jesus the Christ as the Savior that He is.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
“who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,”
It just doesn’t get any plainer than that. No hoops to jump through! No classes to sit through! Nothing to memorize! All it takes is a simple change of heart, in the acceptance of the Gift of Salvation.
15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. Romans 8:15-16
When we accept Jesus, we are no longer in bondage to sin. We didn’t earn anything, we are simply recipients of God’s mercy and grace. With that salvation comes the fellowship and relationship with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
If we remain in that fellowship, God WILL continue to work with us and in us, to strengthen us and mold us in preparation for our heavenly inheritance. The crux of this is that WE cannot do it, only God can and only God will, IF we submit to Him.
“being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;” Philippians 1:6
If you have not made that specific decision; if you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior or if you have any doubts about your salvation and relationship with God, please join me in this very short and specific prayer: