by Pat Cooper
July 5, 2019
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6
If I were to live daily in pursuit of doing the right thing before God and man; Praying regularly, reading my Bible daily, attending church every Sunday, living honestly and honorably; certain to dot every religious “i” and cross every humanitarian “t” only to one day wake up in hell. Would God be just in committing me to that end? Yes, yes he would. In fact, each morning that I wake breathing earthly air I should immediately fall to my knees thankful to have been granted mercy and not justice.
As followers of Jesus, it is the beauty of grace that we should receive mercy and forgiveness instead of the rightful punishment divine justice would impose. Being predisposed to sin, as in Adam all are, the prescribed punishment is death; not merely cessation from life, but to be eternally separated from God spending day without end in unrelenting torment: Wounds that won’t heal, headaches that won’t go away, sickness and disease, hunger, unimaginable suffering without relief or cure.
Sure, no one wants to hear that sermon. It’s not the comfy-cozy, cute and cuddly message popular today. But apart from faith in Jesus, and in him alone, it is your truth. A future reality only a breath away for all who turn a deaf ear to the gospel. For this reason, the apostle Paul labors through the early portion of his letter to the Romans pointing out the necessity in our understanding exactly where we stand when before a holy God we stand alone.
The wise reader will consider it was arrogance, not ignorance that toppled a great number of powerful men and women in scripture. So, to come to the end of life on the presumptuous note that you’re smarter than the average bear and you have reason, apart from faith in Christ, that will convince God to let you into his heaven then your reasoning is flawed, foolish, and fatal. Scripture is firm and replete in declaring salvation by grace alone through faith in Jesus.
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
— Acts 4:12
We have put together a list of resources to help you dig into the book of Romans! Visit clifec.com/romans to check it out!
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