Every Sunday countless people all over the world sit in church buildings with a false sense of security. They assume that their morality, lifelong church membership, or baptism will earn them a place in heaven. While many of these folks have a sincere desire to please God, they are confused about what the Christian life is all about. They think in terms of doing rather than being. So they imitate the actions of good Christians: going to a weekly service, praying, reading the Bible, and trying to be decent people.
However, salvation is not the product of our good works. We come into the world with a corrupt nature, and our wrongdoing is born of a heart turned away from the Lord. Because we are all sinful people, we sin. It’s that simple. The good news is that in the salvation experience, we are given a brand-new nature (2 Cor. 5:17). Our sin is wiped away because Jesus Christ sacrificed Himself to pay the penalty we owed. From the moment we trust in Him, the Holy Spirit dwells in our heart so we can live righteously.
The world values action, but God prioritizes relationship—specifically a right relationship with Him. People who scurry about flaunting religiosity are missing out on the deeply satisfying and joyous intimacy between a believer and the heavenly Father.
We can help correct others’ tragic misunderstanding by being ready to explain the reason for our hope. (See 1 Peter 3:15.) Knowing Christ is what matters. So speak of the personal relationship with Him that’s possible when a person admits his or her need and trusts in the Savior.
Bible in a Year: 1 Chronicles 16-18