September 24, 2015
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” Romans 3:10. Those are sobering words. We tend to overlook our own sins and unrighteousness because we can justify and defend our own actions. The end justifies the means so to speak. The problem is that our idea of good and bad doesn’t agree with God’s. You may think that you’re a good person, but remember, you’re judging yourself by human standards that are biased in your favor. God’s judgment is without prejudice and completely fair. He loves His creation and has done everything possible for us to live eternally with Him, but it is a choice we make to accept Him or reject Him. If you have not committed your life to Christ yet, read through this commentary and understand that you need Jesus Christ for salvation. Your eternal life depends upon it.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23. Every person who has ever lived, from Adam right on down to you and me, are sinners. For instance, when we get in a tough situation, we lie: “The check is in the mail”. Or we steal by taking a paperclip or pencil from work without permission. These don’t seem too bad, but they are still lies and theft, and therefore sins. Because of our sin nature we cannot stand before the perfect and righteous God on our own merit. You may protest that everybody lies now and then or takes a pencil and it’s just normal. That truth underlines the fact that all have sinned and fall short of God’s standard of perfection. Just because we look at little white lies and other “little” sins as part of life doesn’t make these or any other act of disobedience, acceptable by God’s standards. God doesn’t hide the truth and Scripture tells us clearly what sin is and where it originated.
The Garden of Eden was a real place. When God created Adam, this beautiful Garden was Adam’s home. God gave him one rule: Don’t eat the Forbidden Fruit. If he did, he would die. God gave Adam free will because He wanted human beings who would choose to love Him instead of robots who were programmed to love Him. After Adam was created God took Eve out of him to be his companion. They lived in Paradise and had all they could ever want, yet Eve talked with Satan, listened to his lies, and was deceived into eating the Forbidden Fruit. Satan’s lies confused her and she choose to disobey God. After she ate the Forbidden Fruit she knew that God was right, not Satan, but it was too late. The perfect body she had been created with became corrupt. She had lost her immortality. Adam loved her. He loved her so much that he chose to eat the Forbidden Fruit and join her in sin.”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:” Romans 5:12. Because of Adam’s choice, sin and death became a reality for all of God’s creation. Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden and we all suffer the consequences of Adam’s sin. Everyone will feel the sting of death one day. If the story ended there, humanity would have no hope; we would have no way to get back to the fellowship Adam and Eve shared with God prior to their sin.
Although Adam’s sin brought sin and death to all humanity, there is hope. “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23. Eve was deceived, Adam made a choice, and we live daily with the suffering and death that resulted from that sin. God was not surprised by Adam’s choice but certainly was saddened. The good news for us is that a plan was in place long before God laid the foundations of the earth. It would take time to fulfill that plan, and first the total depravity of mankind would be manifest. Adam lived to see his descendants embrace Satan’s lies and rejected God. Fallen angels corrupted all flesh and God would have to judge His creation and destroy it by flood. A few animals and eight people were still genetically pure and God saved them through that flood of Noah’s day. After the flood Noah’s family repopulated the earth, but Satan and his minions continue to tempt humans to sin and rebel against God.
Let’s take a short side trip off of the Roman Road to see why Jesus Christ is important. After sin entered creation, man was separated from God. Because He loves us so much He began showing us the way to come back to fellowship with Him. He first gave the Law to Moses. Like a schoolmaster the Law taught about God’s ways. It taught what constitutes sin and it also provided a temporary way to cover sin through animal sacrifices…the shedding of animal blood. When we think of the sacrificial shedding of the blood of animals it is an ugly thought. When Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden, God sacrificed one of His animals to make them coverings. Their sin wasn’t taken away, but it was covered by the blood sacrifice. “It is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.” Hebrews 10:4. The only possible way for sin to be taken away would be by the shedding of pure blood not corrupted by sin. That blood could only come from God Himself. “The next day, John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” John 1:29. Jesus Christ, God incarnate, willingly left Heaven, entered His creation, and shed His pure blood on the cross of Calvary. He rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven. By faith, if you choose to accept the sacrifice of Jesus Christ you will be saved from eternal damnation.
Now, back to the Roman Road. God’s love for you is without bound. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8. We all sin, but even though we go against His will, God still loves us and shed His own blood to save us from eternal damnation. “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Romans 10:13. God doesn’t want anyone to face eternal death, but He won’t force you to choose eternal life. He loves you and He wants you to spend eternity with Him. All it takes is faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross. Only the blood of Jesus Christ will take your sin away. God made it easy for us. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Romans 10:9-10.First understand that you are a sinner and cannot save yourself. Then believe that Jesus, God incarnate, shed His blood to take away your sin. He rose from the grave on the third day and conquered death, providing us with the only way to eternal life. It is only His righteousness that makes us worthy to stand in the presence of God, not our own. Place your faith in Him and you are forgiven. After that there are things you need to do out of obedience, like be baptized and study your Bible. These things will help you grow stronger in your walk with Jesus, but they won’t save you…salvation is only obtained by faith in the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Then your journey truly begins. Sin will continue to haunt you, but when you recognize sin in your life and confess it to God He will forgive you. Then, turn away from that sin. It will be a lifelong process, but a journey well worth taking. “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:1. That peace can only come through our Lord Jesus Christ.
There is no better time than right now to place your faith in Him. There is no sin you have committed that He will not forgive. “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” Romans 7:24. Who shall deliver you? Jesus Christ. Admit you are a sinner, ask Him to forgive you, then know that you are no longer condemned. He loves you and wants you with Him for eternity.
If you have realized that you need to ask Jesus Christ to forgive your sin and to be Lord of your life, then pray this prayer or one similar: Heavenly Father, I know now that I’m a sinner and I am lost. I’m sorry that I’ve broken Your laws and I know that I can’t do anything to save myself. I know that salvation is only through Jesus Christ shedding His blood on the cross. I need You to forgive me. I come before You now and ask Your forgiveness and invite You to come into my life. I ask You to forgive my sins and rule in my life from this day forward. I place my life in Your hands. In Christ’s name I pray, Amen.
If you earnestly prayed that prayer, welcome to the family. You are now a sinner saved by the grace of God. “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.“Romans 8:1. Your next step is to find a Christ centered, Bible believing place to worship with fellow believers. Study your Bible. Ask questions. Learn about God and grow in His ways. You will be tempted by sin throughout your life, but strive to honor God in all you do. When you fail, ask Him to forgive you and rely on the Holy Spirit to guide you away from sin. Listen to Him.
Every true Christian has come to a soul saving faith in Jesus because someone shared the Gospel with them. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 10:17. It might have been a parent who has raised you to know Christ, or maybe it was a Sunday school teacher or a friend who took time to answer your questions. Someone cared enough about you to share the Gospel with you. Maybe you met Jesus through this commentary. How it happened isn’t as important is that it did happen. Now it’s your turn. Share the Good News of Jesus Christ with a friend, a co-worker, or anyone else you know who is lost. Take them down the Roman Road and show them their need for Jesus.
God bless you all,
Ron Graham’s previous commentaries archived at http://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is “theopneustos” God breathed.