Thursday, February 28, 2008

Life's toughest questions

People to people ministries recently conducted a survey among its broadcast listeners about the life's toughest questions. They have received hundreds of questions (I have included the top 10 here) and now answering the top ten on the radio everyday.

1. What is salvation and how can I know with full assurance that I'm saved?
2. After I've come to Jesus, why do I still sin?
3. In light of all the end-times verses in the Bible, how can I not be afraid of the future?
4. How do I love my husband / wife / kids more? How do I raise my children?
5. How do I find a good church?
6. Why do I feel the way I do, and how do I deal with my emotions?
7. How can I really know that I'm forgiven, and how do I forgive someone who has hurt me so badly?
8. What is God's will for my life?
9. What is the purpose of the 10 Commandments?
10. Can I really believe the Bible is true?

As you can see the No. 1 in the list is about the assurance of salvation. I am not quite surprised to see this because of the vast teachings going on in Christendom about the performance based holiness. This is one thing that I have struggled a lot in my Christian life. While I have been under the teaching of 'confessing yours sins keeps you saved', 'God is happy with you as long as you keep yourself holy', 'when you sin you go out of fellowship with God' etc, I was under tremendous pressure to 'keep up'. It was a miserable life as I was trying to live the life only Christ can live. God, by His grace revealed to me why the life he gives us is eternal not temporary. It is because of the eternal consequence of His cross. He took away ALL the sins on the cross and cried out it is finished. And when He said 'it is finished', he meant it. He finished the purpose of His incarnation. What was His purpose? John the Baptist told us what Messiah's purpose was when he introduced Him to us by saying, 'Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!'

The wages of sin is death; it is not going out of fellowship or being afflicted with sickness etc. While I was dead in my transgressions (enemy of God) he died for me and took all my sins away. He didn't 'cover' it, He took it away from the eyes of God, never to see them again. I can either believe Him or reject Him by trying to obtain forgiveness by my good works, confessions etc. Why my salvation is eternal? The only thing which can cause spiritual death (losing salvation) is sin and it is an impossibility that sin can cause my spiritual death because He eternally dealt with it on the cross once and for all. There is not even a single sin which he didn't take away at the cross. He left absolutely nothing for me to confess in order to obtain forgiveness. Who am I to think that my confession can obtain forgiveness when Bible says, 'without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness'?

There is absolutely no condemnation for those who are in Christ.

I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.


Walking Church said...

I found that God makes me 'Holy'; I cnnot make myself Holy no matter how much I try. Since we are found in Christ, who is Holy, I think we are contaminated as well (giggle). This thinkin did not go well with my buds at seminary...cause as we all know it is all about trying harder and me being better (hand me a barf bag)...okay I feel better now..

It amazes me how many church's have not fully appropriated their freedom through Christ as revealled in the NT. They want a high bread and sit on the fence between NT and OT. Twisted or what! Jesus clearly mentioned at the last supper that His blood brings about a new covenant.

I know I am singing to the choir on this. Thanks for letting me vent and hyperventalate..a little..I just enjoy these robes of righteousness soooo much. By the way U dudes look good in yours as well.

Daelon said...

I can't wait until our eyes are opened and we literally see the awesome robes of GOD'S VERY RIGHTEOUSNESS on us. We are righteous apart from works period! Not just works of the law, the Spirit through Paul covered it all and said, "Apart from works". None of God's laws and none of man's laws can justify or make us more holy.

We are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus! Jesus said we're gonna shine like the SUN (the righteousness of THE Son) in the kingdom of our Father!!!

Walking Church said...

Daelon: Amen bros.

That type of talk gets me flying high. We are indeed the righteousness of God.

Joel Brueseke said...

Wow, I too can see why the number one question is at the top of the list. I've had so many discussions with people over the years on that subject, that I can't keep count. I'm guessing that question will remain number one, but my hope and prayer is that people all around the world will come to know who they are in Christ, and find their life and sufficiency in Him, and no longer need to ask that question or anything like it.

Bino B. Manjasseril said...

Thank you all.

The terms like 'pursuit of holiness' can be very misleading. We cannot 'pursue' holiness; rather it is a gift we receive from God when we put our faith in Christ. I have heard someone says, 'Holiness is not the way to Jesus, Jesus is the way to holiness'.

Once I was involved in a debate in a online forum on 'Can we lose our salvation?'. For some people it is very hard to get it, so this is what I told them finally:

"If God saved you, you will not lose it, If you saved yourself you may lose it. Over and out!".