Anytime we add requirements to faith, we have strayed from the true gospel message. We certainly need to be challenged as to what faith really means and how a saving faith will manifest itself in our life, but we must never walk away from Salvation by grace through faith alone.
"I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel - which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!"
This is a serious call...one we cannot ignore. We are challenged in the strongest of terms to continue walking according to the true gospel.
We usually begin this walk by focusing on our own life. We slowly take our eyes off of what we can do and look more upon what Christ has already done; "He must become greater, I must become less" (John 3:30). But there remains another step we must begin to take. This important step is to recognize that the grace which pulled us out of the slimy pit and set our feet on solid ground (Psalm 40:2) is the same grace which works in the life of others. We know we can do nothing to earn or add to our Salvation, but how often do we place "requirements" on those around us?
How often do we inadvertently create lists of what a true Christian must do? True Christians must dress and talk a certain way, listen to an approved list of music, watch an approved list of movies, and drink only an approved list of beverages. Our churches tend to have lists which can include quality of clothing, length of hair, style of worship music, or involvement in certain "sins" about which the Bible is absolutely silent. Sure there are extremes in every category which are clearly outside the will of God; but there is a wide range which, though it may make us uncomfortable, belongs to the grace of God. Our walk with God begins with His grace and must continue by His grace.
We must all strive to follow Christ in a completely surrendered obedience; but in walking down this path, we must never pull anyone from the true gospel by requiring obedience to our list. We are saved by grace through faith and faith alone - and "we" includes ALL our Brothers and Sisters who have trusted in Jesus for the forgiveness of sin. Let's follow hard in His grace and diligently seek to recognize God's transforming power at work as He continues to pour out His grace in others.
Have a Christ Centered Day!
God's Daily Word Ministries