Monday, June 29, 2009

Self Made Salvation

Whenever man gropes at and for salvation, he attempts to do it on his own terms. Salvation, we think, is best gotten when it is earned. Now, how can we earn salvation?

Some views of salvation ask us to be good to ourselves--usually the self-focused salvation theories present this thesis. Be nice to your Self and your Self will be nice to you. Materialism is the classic case of this. Nowadays, people are wondering how else to be nice to themselves. They have bought all the things money can buy--the best clothes, the best cars, the best computers, the best conquests. They think they are being saved by their possessions

Some salvation theories ask us to treat people like they treat us --good to neighbors, and friends. Be nice to others and others will be nice to you. And if they are evil to you, return the favor. An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. Someone said that an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth has left the world without sight and without teeth, sightless and toothless!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Three men were talking about how each of them gives money to charity, and therefore to God. The first said, when he gets paid, he draws a line, throws his money up, and whatever falls on the far side is for God and charity, and whatever falls near him is for himself.

The second man said, "when I get paid, I draw a circle. I throw my money up. Whatever falls inside the circle is for God and charity; whatever falls outside is for myself. I can also vary the size of the circle as necessary.”

The third man said, "when I get paid. I simply throw my money up. Whatever stays up, God keeps as my donation to charity; whatever falls down comes for me."

Doing everything on our own terms is so convenient isn't it? The real problem is that even when it comes to salvation, that which God must give to us, we still want to do it on our own terms.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Freedom From the Law

Let's say you are swimming in a lake late at night and are drowning. You come up for air and shout for help.

The person on the shore reads the law to you, "Code B, Section 1, says, "Swimming is prohibited in this area after 6:00p.m." He might make you feel guilty, but that is all. The law cannot save you from drowning.

When we don't have the power to meet the laws of God that are written on our hearts, we only feel guilty. Any religion, person, society and culture can make laws. The question is how those who are living under the law can meet the law.

They can't, unless they die! i.e., when they are no longer under its jurisdiction.

What does it mean to die? Well, you have to die to your own ways of meeting the expectations of God. You have to give up any ambition that you can please God by meeting His law with your own power.

Then He will give you the power to follow His laws.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Accountability and the Law

There is a major problem when we can't know the laws we are living under and are held responsible for it. There is a difference between "don't know the law," and "can’t know the law."

God says you do know his laws. You can't use the excuse that you didn't know his laws, any more than you can use that excuse with the tax authorities in your country. They will say, "Ignorance of the law is no excuse," because it was your responsibility to find out what the law was and keep it!

How do you know God's law? Even if you have not heard his commandments you have God's law written in your hearts. Intuitively and innately, your heart and conscience already carry the basics of God's expectations of you. That is why when you do wrong, your heart accuses you. When you do right, it defends you. It is the law written in your heart. You already know God's laws in broad outline.

But you also need to know the God of the laws to find the power to keep them, and His forgiveness when you fail.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Laws Reveal

Laws are good, especially when made by good law-givers rather than arbitrary ones. Laws help any society to function more smoothly.

Laws also reveal authority and power. The entity which writes the laws carries authority and power. The legislator has power over the subject.

And while laws demonstrate authority and power, "laws" don't have the power to make you obey them.

More importantly, "Laws reveal the presence of a good law rather than the presence of a good in you."

Most importantly, "laws accent your failure even though they are not bad and don't cause failure." They are like an X-ray machine which tells you that you are diseased. The machine is good, it didn't cause your disease, but it shows your disease clearly. Laws show how weak you are to meet the laws. That is, while laws are good they also accent failure.

But there is One who can who can free you from your failures.