We have looked, this week, at some incredibly difficult passages of scripture where we find people who have presented themselves to Christ only to hear words of warning from Jesus about the cost of following Him. From those passages, we have learned that salvation does not mean saying a certain prayer and then go on like nothing has changed. If we truly believe in Jesus, we will follow Him. Believing in Him means we give ourselves to Him even into the point of death, if it comes to that. Jesus tells us there is a cost to salvation beyond the price that He paid. Now we address the question, “Why would we want to offer our lives to Jesus?” Today on Christian Holiness Daily.
Why should anyone follow Christ? Because the alternative is eternal separation from His love. Because the alternative is eternal separation from all love. Because without Christ we will be eternally separated from all that is good, all that is pure, all that is lovely, and all that is comforting.
I follow Christ because He loved me before He even set the earth spinning on its axis. Because He died for me even though I am a filthy sinner. I love God because He first loved me.
Before I gave myself to God, I lived a life of sin, but i believed I was a Christian. I had said the sinners prayer. I believed in Christian. I believed in Jesus. I knew He is God made flesh, born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died, was resurrected, and ascended into heaven. I believed all that, but I still lived a life of filthy sin. I was on the path that C. S. Lewis called the “safest road to hell.” It is the gradual road, never too steep. It has no road signs that identify it. But the end of the road is eternal hellfire.
After I gave myself to Christ, if I strayed from the path I discovered all kinds of road signs; there was no doubt that I had strayed. God loves His children too much to allow them to wander too far before calling them back to His side.
A couple weeks ago, I talked about Hebrews 6 and said that so long as a Christian does not turn his or her back on God and stop believing, they cannot lose salvation. This is true. Now, today, I am saying that if one believes he or she will follow Christ with total surrender, counting everything else as loss. How, you may wonder do I justify that? How can both be true, you may wonder.
I think here is where we need to define what it means to believe. If one truly believes, one will follow Christ. If one then follows Christ, they get to know their Creator, walk with Him, talk with Him, then they cannot help but change. They cannot avoid being filled with His love. That doesn’t mean they cannot sin. That doesn’t mean they cannot turn back. It does mean that if they do sin, their sin is already forgiven. If they do turn back, the Holy Spirit will hunt them down and call them back home.
I willingly surrender my life to God no matter what the cost because He is a loving Father who wants to spend time with me, His son.
Monday we begin a conversation about how salvation changes our lives. Don’t miss The Best of Christian Holiness Daily tomorrow. And tune in to Christian Holiness Sunday for classic works of old time holiness preachers and writers.
Holiness is, perhaps, the most misunderstood concept in Christianity. Anyone who has striven to follow the life of Christ can likely tell you that it is impossible to do. No one can match His love, His grace, or His compassion. For no one but Jesus is perfect. Once the believer is filled with and empowered by the Holy Spirit, though, he or she is filled to the brim with the love of Christ, and desires nothing more than to please God and follow in Christ’s steps. The love of sin is gone. In its place is a love and passion for others. That is Christian Holiness. This is Christian Holiness Daily.