There are many Christians who have not as yet grasped the applications of the gospel. They have no idea how much God loves them.
Let me ask you---do you enjoy being a Christian, a follower of Jesus? Some folks, if they are honest, would have to answer 'no' to that. They are not satisfied; they have a bad case of 'SDS'... They're Saved, Dissatisfied and Stuck!
Does this description fit you? You are earnest, but you have no joy, you are sincere, but you have no peace. You are not sure whether or not God accepts you and your performance! You quietly think that if you can obey God He will accept you, but if you fail and disobey, He will reject you. You, my friend have caught a bad dose of religion! You are not walking in the gospel.
In the gospel, we learn that we are accepted with God, not because of our doing, but because of the doing of another, the Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:19). This is good news---this is Gospel Truth. We are accepted because of His performance. And yes, we do obey the Lord but not to gain acceptance, rather, we obey because we have already been graciously accepted (Titus 3:8).
Acceptance with God is a central benefit of the gospel (Ephesians 1:6; John 1:16). This is a demonstration of God's wisdom. After all, there can be no acceptable worship unless there are acceptable worshipers. This is not the way that religion tells it. The religious man thinks that by worship and performing his religion he can find acceptance with God: But the truth is just the opposite. Man must first be accepted and only then can he worship. He must first be accepted before He can present any acceptable worship to the Father.
The great mystery, when we consider things, is how the all-holy God can possibly accept us. We are, after all, by nature corrupted and vile sinners (Psalm 148:2; Mark 7:21-23). The gospel, however, answers this question for, by the gospel, we understand that our acceptance is in Christ alone! He has bought and paid for us with blood His blood! Faith grasps and confidently holds to this. Faith knows that our works, prayers and tears cannot save us! Faith grasps that we are saved by Christ alone, apart from any contribution we might hope to make. Faith causes us to rest in the truth that Christ's blood has powerfully redeemed us!
Someone once said it like this;
Faith is looking to Christ, not to how much faith I have. It is not faith that saves, but it is Christ who saves!
Faith is looking to Christ and not to my prayers, my worship, nor my meditations.
Faith is looking to Christ and neither to the name I wear nor the doctrines I hold. It is not what, but Whom we believe.
Faith is looking to Christ and not the law. The law wounds but never heals; it kills but never gives life.
Faith is looking to Christ and not to His mother, nor His apostles, nor to an image of a cross. There is one God and one Mediator.
Faith is looking to Christ, and not to the brethren; neither the best nor the worst of them--- we put no confidence in the flesh.
Faith is looking to Christ, neither to my strength nor to my weakness. All grace or strength we have is by His grace, and when I am weak, then I am strong.
Faith is looking to Christ, not my works! Without Him our righteousness is filthy rags.
Faith is looking to Christ yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Faith is looking to Christ at all times, and we never stop coming, looking, resting, trusting, believing, depending nor leaning on the Lord Jesus Christ.
And that's the Gospel Truth!
Minister of the Gospel
The Grace Centre
6 Quay Street, New Ross,
County Wexford, Ireland.