The Only Answer
This week's focus: Forgiveness
Sharing the gospel is one of the many blessings of volunteering at a faith-based pregnancy center. I must admit when I was first started working there, I was hesitant to speak with people I thought wouldn’t be interested based on their religion, appearance, attitude, demeanor, etc. Then God lovingly reminded me that He sees what I don’t. 1 Samuel 16:7 says it best when we read,
“God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”
Since then, I don’t assume who should or shouldn’t hear a message that God wants the whole world to know. It’s a privilege to point people (who I previously thought wouldn’t want directions) to eternal life in Jesus.
Pastor Alistair Begg has a witty take on an unlikely candidate who made it to Heaven. The following is a transcript from his sermon “The Power and Message of the Cross.”
Think about the thief on the cross. I can’t wait to find that fellow one day to ask him, “How did that shake out for you? Because you were cussing the guy out with your friend. You’d never been in a Bible study. You’d never got baptized. You didn’t know a thing about church membership. And yet—and yet, you made it! You made it! How did you make it?”
That’s what the angel must have said—you know, like, “What are you doing here?”
“Well, I don’t know.”
“What do you mean you don’t know?”
“Well, ’cause I don’t know.”
“Well, you know… Excuse me. Let me get my supervisor.”
They go get the supervisor angel: “So, we have a few questions for you. First of all, are you clear on the doctrine of justification by faith?”
The guy says, “I’ve never heard of it in my life.”
“And what about… Let’s go to the doctrine of Scripture immediately.”
This guy’s just staring.
And eventually, in frustration, he says, “On what basis are you here?”
And he said, “The man on the middle cross said I can come.”
That is the only answer. When we, like the thief on the cross, repent and look to Jesus alone to save us, He forgives our sins and redirects our destination: eternal life with Him.
Understanding this, may we have a holy boldness to share the good news with everyone—including the most unlikely candidates—because we realize that good people don’t go to Heaven; forgiven sinners do.
by: Jennifer McAlister for My Faith Votes
1 Samuel 16:7
“…God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Pray: Dear Jesus, You are the only answer. May we obediently share this powerful truth with everyone. We love You, Lord, Amen.
Think: C.S. Lewis once declared that there would be three surprises in heaven: “Who’s there; who’s not; and the fact that you’re there.”
Act: We know from Scripture that a house built on sand and unbiblical principles will reap disorder and disaster. The object of our faith is a powerful and good God who created every person, invented the institution of the family, established the creation of the church, and didn’t forget to offer guidelines for government (Romans 13). Download our free 14-day family devotional to help understand a biblical perspective on voting and government. It serves as a reminder that our faith should influence all areas of our lives.
We want to see God honored in America, and we pray for an unprecedented spiritual awakening.
This devotion was produced in partnership with Every Home for Christ.
This ministry is made possible by the generous support of friends like you.