Penned By: Kevin K O’Connor
Date Penned: May 18, 2017
Main Thought: The determining factor of salvation
From Beginning to End
Rom 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
True faith is more than naming it and claiming it, it’s action based on what one believes from the heart and not the head. And action, as used here, is more than physical action, it’s the turning of the heart. For there will be many death bed saints in Glory while those who lived a life time of ‘religion’ will be long gone from there. And when one’s heart turns, if alive and physically able, their actions also follow. Jas 2:17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Jas 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Jas 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. Jas 2:20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Faith is the horse that leads the cart, not vice versa. And, to enter Heaven, one at least needs the horse ‘faith’ while the cart may or may not be there due to the turning of the heart may have happened while on their death bed. 1Co 3:15 If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
There are those who spend a lifetime filling up their cart, but have neglected the most important item, the horse (faith, a personal and passionate relationship with Jesus as Lord & Savior). The following scripture reference is one of the greatest references to those who enter in compared to those who do not;
Mat 25:34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: Mat 25:35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Mat 25:36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Mat 25:38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Mat 25:39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? Mat 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Mat 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: Mat 25:42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: Mat 25:43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Mat 25:44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Mat 25:45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. Mat 25:46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. And, notice the difference between those in living relationship with Jesus and those only in a ‘confessional’ relationship with Him; those that truly knew Him responded as noted in verses 38 and 39 “When saw we and do those things?” Next take notice of those who only had a ‘confessional/name it – claim it’ relationship with Him as noted in verse 44 “when did we NOT minister unto thee?” It’s amazing but once someone has come into a true and living relationship with the Prince of Peace, they automatically are touched by the infirmities of those less fortunate than themselves. And, those who only have a name it and claim it relationship with Him have all of the same ‘appearances’ of knowing Him but lack the compassion on those less fortunate than themselves. God in Jesus was and is the greatest expression of someone being Greater stooping to helping someone much lesser than themselves. While those who only use Jesus as they use those less fortunate than themselves as ladder rungs to get to where they want to go.
God is to use us and not vice versa. Psa 95:6 O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker. Psa 95:7 For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. Today if ye will hear his voice, Psa 95:8 Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
Those who instead choose to use God rather than to allow Him to use them, will be like those noted as follows; Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? Mat 7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Those that allow the Rock of Christ to break them will come into relationship with Him while those who harden their hearts and try to use Him for their own purposes will be totally destroyed by Him; Mat 21:43 Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. Mat 21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
While we use words to communicate, an actual relationship with Jesus as Lord is so much more than that. It’s an experience of being broken or dying to self and rising to newness of life with Him as Lord & Savior, not some kind of religion to stick in our pocket to perform show and tell with. And, once we’ve come into relationship with Him we need to keep it a relationship of faith, not works just as the Galatians learned; Gal 3:3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Works will be a natural by-product of a passionate, loving relationship with Jesus, BUT faith will NOT BE a natural by-product of one who makes works their focus as seen in Matthew 7:21-23.
Romans 1:17 it begins with faith and ends with faith. Let’s not water down our relationship with Him by making anything but a passionate loving relationship with Him our focus and desire.
Heavenly Father, thank You for the indescribable Gift of Your Son! May He be the desire of each one our hearts with a desire to please Him with all we say and do. For it’s in Jesus Eternal, Matchless, Glorious Name we pray, amen.
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