Written By: Ryan Walters
When has man ever stood sinless and blameless before God, the required finished product to be in perfect tune without blemish with the Creator of all things, by his own merit?
Man can imitate Christ-like behaviors, attitudes and words as long as he pleases. But if it is not done for the glory of Christ, for the sake of Christ, or done in the name of Christ, it is meaningless.
If he does not return acknowledgement of his righteous works back to the compelling unconditional love of Christ, what worth remains in his good deeds?
What eternal reward belongs to he who plagiarizes good relational-living with the absence of confession that God established and defined relationship in the awakening of mankind; the dawn of bad-relating that we refer to as sin?
Tell me, does running an errand for the homeless man provide him any direction in his post-death destination if not acted upon by the transformative power of the Gospel which drives an enlightening, sword-piercing candor of conviction and of biblical truth in our hearts that expresses:
He died for us; now we live for Him.
It’s clear that as Christians we live to seek, serve, and love our neighbors because of how we were first sought, served and loved by Jesus Christ. And it’s our vigorous faith in Him that drives our deed ministry which goes hand in hand with our evangelism. We trust with hope in an eternity to come, that is promised in the scriptures, which will determine how much value our deeds carried in our short blip of an earthly life.
But what about the other approximate 2/3 of the world population who do not hold to the same beliefs as Christians do?
Here are several categories I personally find that groups of people may fit into today:[believers and non-believers alike]
1) Those who believe that an after-life is a myth thus living their lives recklessly and selfishly (they rationalize a multitude of immoral behaviors due to unbelief of eternal consequence).
2) Those who, though thinking that the after-life is fictional, try to live a decent and good life by their own merit (often for the sake of fulfilling a self-satisfying quota).
3) Those who have faith in eternity, but are unsure what it will look like thus living their days in confusion and uncertainty (this group includes both semi-believing seekers but also skeptics and doubters).
4) Those who do in fact believe in a heaven and a hell after this life, but do not take it seriously therefore making levity in light of it & also live carelessly (you’ll usually hear them speak facetious statements such as, “Well I’m already going to hell anyways”).
5) Those who believe in eternity, heaven and hell, but more specifically that heaven is accessed only by works and outward deeds (For example: religious practices such as serving the poor, tithing, daily prayer, attending religious services, etc). I refer to this as the “Stepladder Approach”.
6) Those who believe in eternity, heaven and hell, but believe the God-breathed words of the Bible that say we are justified by faith, not by works (They believe we are saved by the grace of God through faith in the resurrected Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior).
Which category do you fall under?
Your beliefs on what is and what isn’t truth and who is Jesus Christ will be the deciding factor.
I challenge you today to ponder it a bit. After all, what do you got to lose?
“If I’m wrong about God then I’ve wasted my life.
“Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have- Jesus Christ.
Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials- gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss.” -1 Corinthians 3:12-15