The Lord wants to richly bless each and every person, and yet no one deserves those blessings, nor can they possibly hope to earn those blessings since the Lord requires absolute perfect obedience in thought and action, which appears to be absolutely impossible. So does this dichotomy make God a liar? Not at all! Yes, the Lord has set an impossible standard, but He has met that standard for us:
But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, … even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For … all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness,… that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith. Therefore … a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law. (Romans 3:21-29, NKJV)
No, we cannot possibly earn the favor and blessings of the Lord, but we don’t need to! The Lord has completely provided everything we could possibly need to obtain the blessings of the Lord, if we are willing to receive it completely by faith. We must admit that we are powerless to obtain what we so desperately need and desire, on the basis of His supreme sufficiency, and our complete insufficiency. If we claim to be able to meet the requirements to obtain the Lord’s blessing apart from the work that Jesus Christ has accomplished on our behalf, we will receive nothing but the curse of the Law.
Strange, isn’t it? If we claim that God is all powerful and we are powerless, we can have the blessings. If we claim we are able of our own effort to obtain the Lord’s blessings, we stand condemned. Where do you stand? “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8,9, NKJV)
Only in Christ do we have salvation from Hell, from condemnation, and from the curse of the Law, guaranteed! No need to worry about being good enough, because the One who made the requirements also has fulfilled those requirements on our behalf. What a deal! Is there any other religion that even pretends to make such claims? NO! Virtually all other religions leave the entire burden on the individual. Even if they are serving a capricious, or even contemptible and corruptible deity who may never keep any promise that he/she has made. That deity may very well have no intention of keeping his/her own promises, or worse, may be totally incapable of fulfilling his/her promises. What about the deity you serve?
Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, And to present you faultless Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, Be glory and majesty, Dominion and power, Both now and forever. Amen. (Jude 24-25, NKJV)
Copyright (c) 2007 Jon Straumfjord