There is a WHOLE lot of lying going on out there, intending to take us – Christians, or followers of Jesus – off the path that leads to righteousness. (There is life in the path of righteousness, but another path leads to death.~Proverbs 12:28 ASV) Today I was reading an essay that is part of a series I’m following. Following are some quotes that I was led to share.
But first: I was raised within a denomination that taught, either directly or by example, that (a) if you follow certain steps you will get to heaven, and (b) if you want to sin now, you can just follow additional steps to make up for it later. At the same time I had a mother who didn’t teach me about Jesus or really place much emphasis on living for – and with – Him. Her response to things that I questioned was, “Oh God and I have a deal, He’s ok with it and just wants me to be happy” with a wink. My father’s input into my spiritual education was to make sure we went to church, dropping my sister and I off at the door and picking us up an hour later, and lifting us up so we could kiss Jesus goodnight as he eternally hung on the crucifix in the hallway. (There were times he attended church also, it’s not like he never taught by example.)
So growing up I had no idea of the gravity of sin, the love of God, or the true sacrifice of Jesus. Of course over the years since the day – March 7, 1976 – I turned my life over to Jesus, started feeding on the Word with His Spirit guiding me I’ve learned these things, yet I still have spiritual scars that need the healing balm* of truth. Often these words jump out at me as something I’m excited to read, and share, that have helped me heal in the past, or are taking me through new restoration now. And these are the times I feel compelled to write about them here.
(* A healing balm isn’t always immediately soothing; sometimes it stings before leading to the healing. Yet it still tends to the injured places in my soul.)
“Being sincere and true to your chosen way and your conscience is no guarantee of being right with God…God does not accept your way or any way except His own…There are or may be many ways that seem right to people but end in death and destruction.” (There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.~Proverbs 14:12, Proverbs 16:25 ESV [important enough to be written twice in the same book!])
“…the assumption that good works can compensate for improper things one may have done or for the absence of things one should have done — if you have more good works than bad ones you’ll be accepted and saved…God does not want and will not accept one’s ill-gotten gains in lieu of righteousness.” (And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.~Acts 4:12 ESV [read Acts 4:1-22 for context])
There is a reason God prompts me to share some of my experiences and the restoration I receive from His Words, I hope that they also offer soothing to some scars of your own. Please read the remainder of the essay – which is actually on a somewhat different topic – here .