We are justified by the work that Jesus Christ has done for us. The will of the Father is to believe on Him whom He sent.
28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? 29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent – John 6: 28-29 (KJV)
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. 39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. 40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day – John 6:38-40 (KJV)
Jesus came to fulfil the Will of God, and whoever believes on the Son is fulfilling the Will of God. Do not be deceived by teachers who tell you that you physically need to work for your salvation. Let the Holy Spirit lead you into all truth, and not man.
I’ve come a long way from being involved in the New Age occult movement to believing that sin didn’t exist and I was a decent enough person to go to heaven. I used to have an adult site, write erotica, and even published these books, my desire ‘to turn on the world’. No doubt about it, I mocked sin and thought it didn’t exist. I had no understanding of truth until life experiences knocked me down and humbled me to see how wrong I was. God opened my eyes to my need for salvation through the only one who can lead us bath to our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ.
I’ve come across a lot of false teachers on this path, who tried to put me into bondage and to work for salvation. I kept trying to perfect myself, every day failing and falling into sin, mostly with evil thoughts and judgements toward myself and others. Even today I fail multiple times a day. How teachers and preachers can state that sanctification is instant and we need never sin again clearly does not have the truth in them.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us – 1 John 1:8 (KJV)
There is a lot of false teaching out there, which takes our eyes off Jesus and what He did for us, and attempt to get us to look at ourselves, to work for salvation. Are we doing enough. The dangers with this is that we look at others and view them as more holier and then we question our assurance. This puts us back into bondage and then salvation becomes difficult. Do not look to self, but look to Christ and His finished work. It was a sacrifice that God accepted. This is massive. This is a huge truth. We are saved by grace when we believe on what Jesus did for us. Multiple times in the book of John, we are told to simply believe. Salvation is easy and whoever says that you need to work for salvation is teaching a false gospel. Paul the apostle curses anyone teaching a false gospel..
3 Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, 4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: 5 To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: 7 Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. 9 As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed – Galatians 1: 1-9 (KJV)
If we could physically earn our salvation through good deeds then why did Jesus have to die. God demands perfection and sadly NO HUMAN is perfect. Jesus paid the price in His sinless perfection, and whoever believes in Him is made righteous.
This scripture explains God’s mercy and love toward sinners, how sin entered into the world, and the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, who died for all.
6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. 11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: 13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.
15 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. 16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. 17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. 20 Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: 21 That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.
During this walk, I’ve come into contact with some serious self-righteous believers who looked down on me because I didn’t dress right, and still struggled with sin. One woman even told me that I was crucifying Christ every time I engaged in this behaviour. Little does she know what it is like to have OCD of any form. Then I had other believers who told me Stand On The Word song was chanting. Again, I was put back into bondage. This was not the Holy Spirit’s leading, but man’s judgement toward me. Another mennonite believer told me that the devil had brought me and my ex partner together, because he was already married (but separated) and we were having sex. I was even told that I didn’t have the real Jesus because I was having sex outside of marriage. Seriously these people made me doubt my salvation, and it is not up to us to judge one another, but to build and encourage growth. The Holy Spirit must lead us into all truth. Every day I need Jesus for strength. He knows this, so I have had to separate from these people, as they were on their own pedestal of righteousness.
I’ve come to understand that sanctification is a lifetime process, and when we let the Holy Spirit lead, the Christian life becomes easier. We serve God because He loved us first, and not to earn brownie points. The attitude of the heart is important to God. If we are doing something to try to look holy and righteous to others, why even do it because God searches the heart. There is a supernatural joy given when we serve God from the heart. It comes and goes daily.
If you struggle with sin, praise the Lord, that you are already justified because you have trusted in the finished work of Jesus Christ. Every day is a brand new day with the Lord, to learn and grow in grace and truth. Separate yourself from men and women who weaken your faith. Do not compare yourself to others, because righteousness can be seen on the outside in good deeds toward God and man, but the inside may require work. I believe that the Holy Spirit works on our heart, but sanctification is a lifetime process.
Doing works in the flesh can only get us so far before we burn out. If we are truly honest with ourselves in our Christian walk, we all struggle with sin because we are spirit and flesh, and this in turn should cause us to turn to God for strength, growth, patience, and healing. We can do nothing, and we are nothing, without Christ.