Therefore, we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the Law. – Romans 3:28
Paul in this letter to the Roman church discusses the nature of righteousness that comes from the Mosaic Law and from the atoning work of Jesus. He tells us that the Law does not justify anyone. There is a righteousness that comes from obeying the Law, but it will never pardon (justify) a person from their sins. It is only through faith in Jesus that anyone will ever be justified.
So many people try in vain to “earn” or work for their salvation. They truly and honestly believe that doing more for God will gain them his favor and blessing or ensure their passage into eternal life. I am reminded of the cartoon I once read about a missionary couple that opened an orphanage and did great humanitarian efforts to help the people they served. Then, one day on a flight to the USA, a young man seated near them asked them about their work to which they replied about “their work.” As the story would go, the young man asked them about their salvation in Christ alone. They said that “their works” would get them to heaven. Upon death, they entered into heaven and stood before Jesus, who told them that despite all their good works they were guilty of rejecting him. They went to hell!
Are you trying to earn your way to heaven? Are you tallying up the good works versus the bad ones? Here is a bit of truth on the matter. You were born into sin! That sin alone will prevent you from entering heaven even if you lived your whole life without every committing another sin! That one sin, without salvation by Jesus’ grace through faith provided by his death and resurrection, will take you to hell! You cannot be “good enough” to get into heaven. There is none righteous. No, not one! Jesus is the only Righteous One! He alone was able to keep all of the Mosaic Law thereby fulfilling it and relieving its curse off of our lives.
Accept his salvation through grace by faith alone because it is the gift of God and not of your works to prevent you from boasting about saving yourself. God will not share his glory with you or anyone!
Father, doing good works is a sign of a living faith that is being exercised by a believer, but it must not become the focus of one’s life and tempt them into thinking their work (which is really yours) will gain them eternal life. You grant access to your family through grace by faith and nothing else. I don’t want to be one tripped up into believing I can do anything to garner your praise, favor, grace, or salvation. Help me to remain humble and ever aware of your work of salvation through the blood of Jesus! Thank you for saving me from death and from myself. I love you, Dad. In Jesus’ name, Amen.