Things Are True
by Dan Coburn
Pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church
A popular saying about folks when they seem naive is that they “are going through life with blinders on. This means that they are focused to the exclusion of all else. Selfish if you will, and it is always said in a critical or derogatory tone. When we are caught up in something important, whether driving in traffic, or waiting across the scrimmage line for the ball to be snapped, we might tell someone vying for our attention: “Hey; I’m trying to focus here”.
Spiritual Switch: In Christendom, there are two camps. Those of “Works”, and those of “Grace”. Within these two, we (you and I) cover the whole spectrum in between. Some think that they get to heaven, or are ingratiated to God by doing good things. Or by giving bad things up. Or at least, by doing more good things than the goober next door. Some acknowledge God’s word and admit that they are saved by God’s Grace (un-merited favor), but then think that they must jump through some specific hoops to maintain salvation. This usually comes in the form of “keeping God’s law”. This is great, and we should to the degree that we can, keep God’s law. But if you could, what would you ultimately be trusting in, to Obtain, and Maintain your salvation? Answer — YOU!. Also, “for by the works (keeping) of the law, shall no flesh be justified” - Galatians 2:16. Folks argued with themselves and others even in Jesus’ time about this dilemma. Here is what Paul says about it in Eph. 2:8-9. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” We can argue whether the gift is the faith or the grace, (It is both), but here is what he is saying in Elk City language. If you are saved, it is all about Him. Not you. You are saved by His good grace, not due to belonging to any particular denomination, or giving so much money, or getting attendance awards in church, doing a certain number of visitations. If God tells you to do these things, then by all means, do them. But they don’t save you. “lest any man should boast” or walk around in heaven with his thumbs in his arm pits bragging about what he did, or how good he was. In Isaiah 43:25, God toots His own horn, and we would do well to listen. “I even I Am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for my name sake, and will remember them no more”. He does it not because of you, but because He said he would. It’s all about Him, not us. This is liberating. All the good things we do, are a by-product of a relationship with Him. Not so He will forgive us, but because he did forgive us. Back to the Blinders. In heaven, God won’t ask you to give an account for anyone but yourself so Put on your spiritual blinders, and quit comparing yourself with the rest of the world. God’s standard is higher than that. Don’t settle for less. God Bless.