In parts 1 and 2 we looked at the bad news. We are all sinners.
“..for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God..” -Romans 3:23
And we saw that sin is not some small debt we can pay off, but is death.
“For the wages of sin is death…” –Romans 6:23
But we saw that the good news, the Gospel, the main message of the bible and the central foundation of Christianity is this:
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” –Romans 6:23
At this point you may be wondering, if Jesus has paid for all of our sins, then why isn’t everyone going to heaven, no matter what they believe? First off, because being saved is not merely a matter of believing what is true. This is a very common misconception which the Bible addresses:
“You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!” –James 2:19
Satan doesn’t lack belief in the existence of God. Satan rebelled against God and wants to rule himself. Christians, likewise, are not people who have simply come to some intellectual assent. The Bible describes salvation in many metaphors, from the paying of debt to the being released from slavery, but the one which I think sums it up best is that of a wedding.
Jesus offers us the free gift of salvation as a groom offering the gift of marriage to a potential bride. He has paid for the wedding and bought/built them a palace to live in, happily ever after.
We are the bride. We have made many poor choices which results in our being sold into slavery to the enemies of the king. We are slaves to sin, and we cannot free ourselves. We are as lost as if we were dead. But the son of the king comes to us and announces that he has paid for our freedom, and we can be his bride and come live in his palace if we accept his hand in marriage.
At this point, she knows his word is true. She believes that he is the son of the king, and that he is offering happily ever after. But she still has a choice. She can choose to go with him or she can choose to stay in her chains. Her freedom is paid for, her palace built and waiting, but she will not be dragged off as property. The prince waits for her to come willingly.
John 3:16 says: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
When the Bible talks about believing in Jesus, it does not mean accepting intellectually that he exists, or even merely accepting his words as true. It means putting our trust in him, as a bride puts her trust in a man when she agrees to marry him and gives her whole life to him for as long as they both shall live.
Being saved is like getting married- you accept the offer, and you profess it to the world, and from that moment on, you are not who you were. The two become one.
Romans 10:9-10 says, “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.”
Say yes to the dress. Jesus has paid your debt and freed you from your chains. Put your trust in him, accept his love, and proclaim to the world that you have made your choice.
#Jesus Loves You