Word for Word 8/21/19

Rev. Ron Pederson
Rev. Ron Pederson

How Can We Be Ready To Meet Our Maker?
    
Jesus said:  “Because I live, you shall live also” (John 14:19)

Certainly we cannot make ourselves alive spiritually. That would be impossible. For in order for us make ourselves spiritually alive we would have to keep all the commandments perfectly. God’s Law demands that we be perfect. God is perfect and He demands no less of us. Jesus said: “Be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” All it takes is just one sin and we stand condemned before God.  Jms writes: “Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” And even if were able to avoid outward sins, God’s Law demands that we must be sinless in all our thoughts too. And that means we must never have one thought of lust, revenge, or jealously, or hold any grudges against anyone.

How then can we be saved? How can we be ready to meet our Creator? The answer is in Jesus. Jesus said: “Because I live, you shall live also”. He lived the perfect life that God requires of us. Never once did Jesus have a sinful thought, or commit a sinful act. Jesus kept God’s Law perfectly, 100%. And guess what? He offers us His sinless life as a free gift for us to claim by faith alone. And when we do that God sees us as He sees Jesus perfect and sinless. When we claim His perfect life by faith, then we can say that our past is also perfect, because Christ’s perfect record is credited to us by faith.

But not only did Jesus live a perfect life for us, He also became guilty of our sin. St Paul writes in 1 Cor: “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” And the Prophet Isa writes: “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.”

Because of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection the sins of all people have been paid for in full. Jesus has won for you and me and all people the forgiveness of all our sins. In Jesus we have the forgiveness of all our sins. And by faith this forgiveness becomes ours personally. Without faith all is forfeited and we remain in our sins.

“Because I live, you shall live also.” Because Jesus came back to life, rose again from the grave it is possible for us to be spiritually alive. We could never save ourselves by keeping the 10 Commandments. The standard is far too high. The one and only thing that can save us is faith in Jesus and in what He has done for us. “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). 

Pastor Ron Pederson
King of Grace Lutheran Church ELS/WELS, Waukon
Trinity Lutheran Church ELS/WELS, Calmar

 

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