You Must Be Saved

“Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God concerning them is for their salvation! I can testify about them that they have zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. Because they disregarded the righteousness from God and attempted to establish their own righteousness, they have not submitted themselves to God’s righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. For Moses writes about the righteousness that is from the law: The one who does these things will live by them.  But the righteousness that comes from faith speaks like this: Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will go up to heaven?” that is, to bring Christ down or, ‘Who will go down into the abyss?”  That is, to bring Christ up from the dead. On the contrary, what does it say? The message is near you, in  your mouth and in your heart.  This is the message of faith that we proclaim. If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one  confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation. Now the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes on Him will not be put to shame, for there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, since the same Lord of all is rich to all who call on Him. For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”  Romans 10: 1-13  The scripture talks of both Jews and Gentiles. Prior to this chapter, he explains that the Jews have not sewed up the assurance of salvation, because they did not believe like their father Abraham, or Isaac.  Their salvation was based on a promise, not works, yet they continually tried to earn their own righteousness.  They did not submit to God’s righteousness. But we Gentiles are not out of the woods either, if we start to establish our own righteousness based on our own goodness. We too, will be evaluated by what’s in our hearts.  I can’t see your heart, and you can’t see mine, but God sees both, and when we ultimately stand before the Lord, it will be alone with what we have done with that belief.  We will either be praised and welcomed into His presence, or turned away, thinking, “What on earth did I do wrong?” There is no favoritism for the Jews, and therefore we don’t have to act like Jewish people to be closer to God. We also don’t have to just keep living like a sinner because we think that we are already saved and it doesn’t matter how we live.  God’s righteousness in us, results in change. If we haven’t had a change in our lives, what is different?  Have we just believed in the ideology of Christ, or have we made Him Lord of our lives.  If we have made Him Lord, then we are to live as He lived, thinking of others, and loving others, not just the ones who agree with us.  We are to be changed, realizing that “All have sinned, and fallen short of the glory of God.” Because of that, we are no better than the sinner, who may not know Christ. Instead of hating that sinner, why not engage that sinner, like someone once engaged you? Pray for those who hate you because of Christ. Love those who persecute you, and think you are vile.  Love the politician even if you don’t agree with his politics.  Work for whoever God has put in charge, and keep His will in our lives.  Brothers and sisters, I write this today, because we are living in an evil charged nation and time. The adversary wants us to hate, so makes the division even greater. It’s up to you and me to start to break down the barriers of hate.  We have always had opposing sides in this nation, but it never came down to hate, like it is today. It’s not that we have to change this, but what we do have to do is change our hearts, and start to love the sinner and the saint, because Jesus died for both, and in doing so, perhaps we can get back to living together without so much hatred.  We will always have division, but let’s not let division dictate our lives.  That’s judgment and it is pulling us away from the One true God, the very One who came to earth to save the Lost, of which we were once one of.  It’s time to once again submit ourselves to God’s righteousness. Pastor Andy

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