There has been a lot of talk about revivals in the past. Most Bible-believing preachers and evangelists will agree that we desperately need one.
We need it in our churches, our communities, and in our nation. Most of all, though, we need it in our own lives. As believers, we need to realize that it is the presence of the Holy Spirit and His power that will make a difference in our lives. Without it, we are little more than just religious people.
Having been with the living Jesus is what others noticed about the Apostles when they were brought before the council after the Resurrection (Acts 4:13). It was the power of the Spirit that made a difference in Stephen’s testimony: “And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake” (Acts 6:10).
Others take notice when you are walking in the power of the Spirit. No, I am not talking about an ecstatic experience. I am talking about being surrendered to Christ so that He can be seen through you.
In order to help bring about revival in the personal lives of believers in America, and around the globe, I have written a book called “Let the Fire Burn,” which will show you how. The key is found in II Chronicles 7:14.
Will you be one of the few Christians who helps to revive our homes, churches, communities, and beyond?
Romans 10:9,10 “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.”
In the book of Romans, Paul the Apostle makes a lot of spiritual truth very clear. He talks much about salvation in the book, and reveals why Christ is the key to our salvation.
The two verses for our text today reveal a short summary of that salvation that God so freely offers to us. You will probably notice how very simple it really is. Some church groups make it much more complex – but that is distorting the truth of God’s Word.
The first word is the one that some religious groups distort so badly. It is the word “confess,” and it simply means “to admit.” This confession is not to be made to men (no matter what their title or position is), but is made directly to God in prayer. The Bible tells us that: “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1Ti 2:5).
A New Lord
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus.”
What this first part of the verse is saying is that you must admit that Jesus Christ is Lord to you, or, your new Boss. Before that time, you were simply your own boss – not God, and that is what sin is in its raw form. Now that you recognize your need of His salvation and forgiveness, salvation can occur by changing bosses of your life!
A New Belief
“and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead.”
This part is just as important as the confession. In addition to recognizing Christ as Lord, you also need to recognize that God put His Son to death for your sins. He did it because there was no other way of salvation. Afterwards, God raised Him from the dead to give us assurance of two things:
That Jesus was indeed the Son of God.
That our sins were truly paid for. If they weren’t, Jesus would still be paying for them.
Note that belief is necessary for salvation. A baby does not believe anything. This kind of Bible belief can only take place after understanding what Jesus did for us on the Cross. It must be a voluntary belief, or faith.
A New and Complete Salvation
The verse states that after you have confessed that you will now serve Christ, and that you understand He died for you, then you are saved. Please note this is not just my interpretation – read it again for yourself. It is not me, a man, saying you are saved, but God Who wrote these verses.
Notice also that the verse states that “thou shalt be saved.” That is pretty clear. Not maybe will be saved; or can hope to be saved, but you shall be saved. This also implies you cannot lose it, like some falsely say. Eternal life can be yours because of what Christ did for you.
The second verse, verse 10, repeats it, so that the reader can be sure to understand what is being said. Belief and confession will save you today, if you call on Him in prayer – from right where you are now.
I’d like to hear from some of you today. If you are saved and reading this, why not let me know by making a comment. Comments are hidden, so no one will see it but me.
John 3:18 “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
This verse makes it plain that whether or not an individual is condemned to Hell depends on belief, or faith. Let me point out now that the word “faith” in this verse does not refer to the doctrinal points of what you hold to, as in a creed.
Many people today have this kind of “faith,” but it is not the kind of faith that saves from Hell. In fact, the Bible tells us that the devils believe, too, but you can be sure that they will not escape the wrath of God in Hell! The devils believe because they were at one time in Heaven. They knew God and dwelt with Him. They have no doubt about His existence or power. Yes, you can be sure that they have those facts straight, and they even tremble over that knowledge: “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:19).
God is much more interested in what you do about those facts about Him and about His Son, Jesus Christ. If your “knowledge” does not cause you to change your ways, then what you call “faith” won’t do you any more good than what the devils know about God.
When Christ first started preaching, His message was to declare: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel” (Mark 1:15). This word “repent” means to change your mind about sin. Whereas you loved it before, hate it now, because it is sending you to Hell. Turn from it and tell God you are sorry for it.
After a child learns what “hot” means, they understand that they should not touch a “hot” stove. They believed it, and it altered their actions. This is the way saving faith works. Once you understand sin is sending you to Hell, it is time to not touch it anymore.
Christ needs to be the object of your faith, and not your works, or what you can do to save yourself. He died for your sins and now wants you to trust (believe) in Him alone for salvation. There is no other way to Heaven. Call on Him in prayer for forgiveness and salvation. Do it today. Make sure you have genuine faith in Christ, and are not merely trusting in a set of facts about Christ.
Notice again what the verse for today declares: “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” Hell is the price for a wrong kind of faith, but faith in the Lord Jesus Christ to save you leads to a real and eternal salvation.
I have no doubt that some people reading this title are going to be at least a little surprised by it. It is not a gimmick, or a trick. It is just plain Bible truth, and it is a truth that is repeated throughout the Bible.
Before I get to those reasons, I ask that you think for a moment why Jesus needed to die at all. You see, if Heaven could be gained by being or doing enough good, then Jesus did not need to suffer at all. The implication would then be that God made His Son to suffer for nothing. Of course, an all-knowing God did not make that mistake.
Here are five reasons from the Bible why good works cannot save anyone.
Because God’s Law Demands Perfection
Every one of us knows that nobody is perfect. We’ve all said it. With God, though, it is different. If He let sin and sinners into His holy Heaven – it wouldn’t be Heaven anymore. It would become just like earth – not much to look forward to, in that case.
To let us know what He wanted, He gave us the Ten Commandments. They are the gatekeeper, and they reveal what we really are inside. The problem with law is that it knows no mercy. Do the crime – do the time, is its motto.
God’s Law is also merciless. It says, in James 2:10: “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” In plain English, it means if you sin, you forfeit Heaven. Now, the Bible also tells us that: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). This means everyone is in serious trouble with a holy God!
Because Sin Is Not Erased by Good Works
Since we all have sinned, it means every human is facing a horrible penalty – Hell. Romans 6:23 tells us that the “wages of sin is death.” Hell is the price for sin – even if there were only one. Even judges on earth operate on a similar principle. Doing good works after a crime does not mean you won’t have to pay for the crime. Plainly, crimes against God will also have to be paid for in full.
Here is what the Bible says about paying for sin: “And almost all things are by the law purged with blood” [death]; “and without shedding of blood is no remission” (“remission” means payment for) (Hebrews 9:22). This Bible verse teaches that no sin is erased – ever – without a sacrifice!
Because Good Works Will Not Change Your Sinful Nature
The Bible makes it plain that we all had a wrong birth. We were born into Adam’s family, and this means we are cursed. Every human needs a new birth and a new nature – one that can please God. The one we are born with loves to sin!
This is why we find that Jesus told one leader in his day: “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Once any individual is “born again,” God gives that person a new nature – one that can please Him.
Because God Does Not Accept Good Works for Salvation
God will never corrupt justice. He will punish sin. If He were to let unrepentant sinners remain unpunished for their sins – then that is not just. Good works cannot buy God off so that He will overlook your sin.
Besides, what people consider to be good works, God does not see them that way at all! In Isaiah 64:6, He tells us: “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses” (good works) “are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” Even the best works are just rags to God, if offered in hopes of being saved by them.
Because Good Works Do Not Glorify God
The reason people try to work their way to Heaven is because they want to try and make themselves look good to God. They want the praise. Unfortunately, it can’t work because God very well knows we are sinners.
Besides that, He sacrificed His Son to buy salvation for you. This means that anyone trying to work their way to Heaven is completely ignoring this great Sacrifice God made for us! They are discounting the very blood of Christ – the only thing that can save their soul!
Notice carefully what God says about works in this verse: “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8,9). Works cannot save the soul. Faith in Christ’s work for you can save.
Notice in these verses also, that works cannot save anyone: “Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law” (Romans 3:27,28).
The single key to getting saved is to trust Christ to save you. He died to take your penalty for sin. Recognize what He did for you. It cost Christ a lot to be able to offer salvation freely to you. Ask Him to forgive you of your sin and to become your Savior today. He is more than willing and able to do it.
Listen to the words of Christ: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
For Salvation and Revival, Evangelist Mike Valles
If you want to read more information about salvation, I encourage you to read the following posts:
When the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they endured a lot of hardships. It was not without a reason, however, and God explained His reason for it in this way in Deuteronomy 8:3 “And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.”
God wanted His children to understand that the things that sustain life here are not the same things that give us real life – God’s kind. By this I mean that biologic life is not at all the same as spiritual life. Neither can having biological life ever bring forth spiritual life.
Being “spiritual” is becoming a more and more popular concept, but it is only pseudo-spirituality. It is just a substitute for the real thing. It is commendable that some people want a greater spiritual depth to their life, but they go about it in the wrong way.
In the above verse, God declared that the purpose of their trials was so that they might learn that the spiritual life that God wants to give us will only come from one Source – the Bible. Getting that life cannot be obtained in a class, with a degree, or even a ceremony. It only comes from God Himself.
Some people look for a better life, or for immortality – as I mentioned in my last post – from science, thinking that it can provide all the answers to life’s problems. Well, it can’t!
God says that if you want true life from God then you need to know what His Word says about it – which I am summarizing in this blog post. Someone once said that there is a vacuum-shaped hole in the heart of every person, and that it can only be satisfied by God Himself. True – and God put it there.
In order to get the true life that God offers, there first must be a hunger for it. You need to recognize, like I did many years ago, that you are a sinner and that that sin keeps God at a distance from you. None of us are good in His eyes: “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10).
Then, the Word of God tells us that our sin is sending us to Hell. We see this in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death.” This refers to the price tag of sin against a holy God, and it refers to both physical and spiritual death. He cannot let sin enter His Heaven, and His justice cannot let sin go unpunished.
This problem leaves us all in a real dilemma: God loves us, but His justice demands the penalty to be paid and He has already condemned us. This is why Christ had to come. He stood on the receiving end of God’s wrath against our sin on the Cross and paid for us what we could never pay.
In reference to the verse above, Jesus boldly declared, in John 6:51: “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
He was not referring, of course, to literally eating Him in order to gain the life He offered. Instead, He explained it in an earlier verse: “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).
The sinner must come to Christ, humbly in prayer, confessing their sin and asking for forgiveness. Then they must ask Christ to give them the life He offers, which is pardon, and eternal life for those who believe it. Notice that He also said if you partake of Him through receiving Him in prayer, that He said you would never hunger or thirst – this means your spiritual life will be satisfying because He moves into your heart and life and will be with you forever! His presence brings salvation.
Do you have this kind of bread – and life – today?
Bringing God’s Great Truths to Light, Evangelist Mike Valles
Would you like to learn more about Bible salvation? I encourage you to get my eBook that explains it in much more detail.