DAY 23 - The Requirement of Obedience

Am I intentionally and diligently learning and practicing Christ’s words so I will have eternal life?

51 I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death."

INSIGHT:  This is one of many Scriptures, like Luke 6:46, Matthew 7:21, John 8:31-32, John 14:15, John 15:10, where Jesus makes it clear that there is more to being saved than just believing in your mind that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  A true Christian must know and follow Jesus’ words.

Tragically, this sound doctrine has been replaced in the majority of our churches today with a watered-down and false gospel.  The Word of God is not confusing on this issue—false teaching is.  Even demons believe Jesus is the Son of God (James 2:19).  True love for God and Christ, and true saving faith, is evidenced by turning from sin, and obedience to the commands of Christ (Acts 26:20, 2 Tim 2:19).  When you truly understand the work of the cross, and the sacrifice Jesus made for your sins, and the forgiveness He offers you, saving you from hell, and coming to live inside you by His Spirit, it becomes your desire to keep His words. Obedience apart from faith in Christ does not save us.  That is a spirit of religion which attempts to achieve righteousness with God, apart from an actual relationship with Him.  Think about the Pharisees who kept the law to the letter but who had no faith in Christ and no love for Him.  They were too busy trying to earn their right standing before God by carefully following all of his rules, without actually honoring and living for Him in their heart.  That approach is impossible and evil.  In their hearts they boast, “I have kept God’s law and I will be able to boast before Him that I did.”  This is also exactly the way Muslims live.  They are law followers.  
We are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone (Eph 2:8).  However, sincere faith is always evidenced by obedience. If a person has no desire to obey Christ’s teachings or has no fruit, they would be wise to examine their faith to see if the Spirit of Christ is really in them. (2 Cor 13:5).