Monday, November 14, 2016

Christian Scenarios

If you attend a church service or listen to one on television or on the internet, you might hear a scenario similar to the following.
Scenario 1 – Pray a prayer and ask God to forgive you of all your sins. Get baptized. Attend church on a regular basis. Tithe (give 10% of your income) to the local church. Do the best you can to try to live up to the standards of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20) and the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5 and 6). When you sin, ask God to forgive you of that sin and restore your fellowship with Him. Bottom line: Pray to get saved, get baptized to show it, do your best not to sin, when you do sin, ask for forgiveness, repeat as necessary. 

However, this scenario could leave you feeling unfulfilled and defeated. Since you will continually commit acts of sin during the rest of your life, you might find yourself feeling like a failure. Do you constantly wonder if you have offended God to the point that He is withholding His blessing from your life or maybe even punishing you for something you have done? As hard as you try, you never really have peace for any extended length of time. Why?

Consider another possible scenario.

Scenario 2Hear the truth of the gospel, i.e., Jesus lived a life without sin, offered his sinless life as a sacrifice for your sin, His shed blood cleansed you of all sin (past, present, and future sins), He was buried and raised to give you His eternal life so you could now live with Jesus Himself living within you in the person of the Holy Spirit. Jesus has made you spiritually alive, forever clean, and permanently accepted by God. Believe this truth knowing that you are a forgiven person with no need to ask for forgiveness since God has already forgiven you of all your sins in Christ (Hebrews 10). Live life motivated by a new clean heart that does not want to sin. Live a life of gratitude to God, expressing praise to God for what He has done, and offering yourself as a living sacrifice for Him to do with you whatever He pleases. 

In scenario 2 the pressure is off. You are not relying on your imperfect performance to get right with God or to stay right with God, you are relying on the perfect performance of Jesus that has made you right with God permanently. Because of this incredible truth you now want to live a life that is pleasing to God. In other words, you do not want to sin. Sin is not consistent with who you are as a child of God. However when you do sin, you know that you are still just as forgiven as you were before you sinned. Jesus died for all sin and has already removed all sin from your account (Colossians 2:14). This fact frees you up to live a life of freedom in the power of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:1). This truly is eternal life living in and through your human life. 

Which scenario sounds better to you? Which scenario do you think is Biblically sound? Just do it! 

By Daniel Niceley
Author of "The Lie of Forgiveness" 

No comments:

Post a Comment