What Must I Do To Be Saved? [video]

(What Must I Do To Be Saved?) Bible Lesson. Teen Bible Lesson. Video Lesson.

Thank you for reading and following this blog for the past two years. Thank you for your support, feedback and prayers. My last post is scheduled for Monday December 30th. After that date I will be devoting my blogging time in 2014 at RefreshMyHeartInChrist.wordpress.com.

To check out previous videos you may have missed, click the “Video Lessons” tab in the menu bar above.

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TAGS: salvation, what must i do to be saved?, plan of salvation, forgiveness, repentance, baptism, gospel

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As Good As Jesus?

As Good As Jesus? Bible Question.

Question:

“I have a strong disagreement with the statement that we “will all be as good as Jesus on the day we enter heaven”. There is no way in the world (or eternity) that any finite person will be as good as the infinite Jesus. Surely there are degrees of righteousness, but none shall have the same degree as the Lord Jesus.”

Answer:

The apostle Paul tells us of Jesus’ righteousness and our sin in 2 Corinthians 5:21 . . .

He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. (New American Standard Bible)

There is no way a sinless person can be held accountable for sin. Yet Jesus took our sin. In the process of taking our sin, we are no longer liable, accountable or responsible for the evil we have done. We stand sinless before God. If we are sinless, we are as righteous as the One who lived a sinless life.

Are there degrees of righteousness? I suppose you mean some people do more than others. Or that some are better able to avoid sin than others. Certainly, from a human perspective, it looks as if some are more righteous than others. But the fact is, all of our human effort is unimpressive to God. . .

For all of us have become like one who is unclean,
And all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment;
And all of us wither like a leaf,
And our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.”

– Isaiah 64:6

God tells us that when we have offered all of our righteous deeds, we still look pretty ugly to Him. In fact, when we do all we are supposed to do we have not impressed God . . .

So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.” – Luke 17:10

I think the misunderstanding comes from thinking that the righteous things we do somehow make us righteous before God. They do not. What makes us righteous before God is the blood of Jesus. Jesus became sin on our behalf. We become the righteousness of God. We are given this righteousness, we do not earn it. The gift of this righteousness is complete. We are given the righteousness of Jesus, meaning we will enter heaven as “good” as He is – perfect, without sin and right with God.

Astonishingly, absolutely, and extraordinarily unbelievable – utterly unthinkable I know – but true.

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My Brother Won’t Forgive Me

(My Brother Won’t Forgive Me) Bible Question.

Question:

“I made a silly comment that deeply wounded a member of the church where I worship. I quickly realized my sin and went to the individual involved as well as his family. I apologized to each and all of them. Some of them forgave me, but my brother will not. He says I didn’t mean it and so he will not come to church or talk to me. What can I do?”

Answer:

Injurious wounds inflicted on one’s soul, psyche, sense of worth and emotions can be devastating. And forgiving others (or ourselves) can be one of the most difficult things a person can do. In both situations, the pain and hurt can be life-altering.

You have taken the most important step already. You have admitted you sin and gone to those you hurt and confessed your wrong. “Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another” (James 5:16).  When we know we are wrong, the first thing to do is admit and confess to those we have injured. You have done that.

Now, the forgiveness is up to your brother. If he will not accept your confession as genuine there is only one thing for you to do: live in such a way to demonstrate you mean it. As to say to all that you have repented of this mistake.

When someone came to John to be immersed, he said to them, “Therefore bring forth fruits in keeping with repentance” (Luke 3:8). John seems to have suspected that these people were looking for a religious ritual to ensure they were good people. He tells them to change, to demonstrate that this act of penitence was genuine and then their immersion would have meaning.

In your situation you can go out of your way to be kind, to be supportive and to be patient. You can speak highly of the people so that your silly comment will be seen to have been a foolish mistake, not your genuine opinion. You can act in such a way that others will see you respect this individual.

Finally, forgiveness is something that must come from the wounded person. Jesus had much to say about forgiving others . . .

For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.” – Matthew 6:14, 15 (New American Standard Bible)

The Lord warns us that our willingness to (or unwillingness) to forgive will have much to do with God’s willingness to forgive us. Jesus says it plainly: if we do not forgive others, God will not forgive us.

So, allow time to heal this wound and work on the heart of your brother. Perhaps, as you bring forth fruits worthy of repentance, he will soften and forgive. The rest is between your brother and God. Leave it there.

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