#Lent#5

Written by cycleguy on March 3rd, 2020

In my years as a pastor I have heard more than once (okay often) people say, “I figure as long as my good deeds outweigh my bad ones, I’m good to go.” They are, of course, presuming several things: their good deed will outweigh they bad; and two, God operates that way.

News Flash!! NOPE.

For one, our good will never outweigh our bad.  What part of “There is none righteous, no, not one” do they not understand?  What part of “By grace are you saved by faith.  And this is not your own doing;  it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one can boast” do they not understand?

We are not saved because our good deeds “outstack” our bad ones. We are not saved because there is any merit in what we do. There is no balancing act. The reality is this: one sin throws the whole scale off.  We are not judged-weighed- on good vs bad deeds.  We are judged on only one thing: have we come to Jesus and had our sins washed away by His blood. Nothing more; nothing less.  So don’t waste your time looking in the mirror at your deeds and do the comparison game.  It won’t work; it won’t matter.

 

10 Comments so far ↓

  1. We are saved, forgiven, through Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross. We can never repay that debt; no matter how we try. No number of good deeds, recitation of the Rosary, lighting candles or whatever will repay what Christ did for us.

    This does not mean we should not do good deeds. In the parable of the rich man and Lazarus, Jesus does not condemn wealth; He condemns the fact that the rich man did not even see, or care, about poor Lazarus at his doorstep.

    In Matthew 25:31-46 Christ contrasts doing good deeds to not doing them.

    In James 2:14-17 we read “My brothers and sisters, what good is it for people to say that they have faith if their actions do not prove it? Can that faith save them? Suppose there are brothers or sisters who need clothes and don’t have enough to eat. What good is there in your saying to them, “God bless you! Keep warm and eat well!” — if you don’t give them the necessities of life? So it is with faith: if it is alone and includes no actions, then it is dead.”

    God bless.

  2. Ryan S. says:

    A long time ago, in a land not so very far away… This was my mindset..
    That somehow, somewhere, there was a cosmic weigh master called God.
    My “theology” went something like this.

    Compared to… I am not that bad.
    So the complex record keeping that God would keep would entail someone else’s deeds compared to my own and if the balance was in my favor, I was in.

    The problem…
    I didn’t realize that one on the other side of the scale was Jesus.

    I also didn’t realize the scale weighed perfection and as I stepped on the scale, I was lifted into God’s grace and forgiveness.

    Not sure if the picture works for anyone else, but it was clear in my mind as I typed.

    • cycleguy says:

      Understood Ryan. I think the key is your second paragraph “if the balance was in my favor I was in.” Thanks. So glad you learned about grace.

  3. Great post Bill, especially during Lent. I understand exactly what you wrote.

  4. I’m also reminded here of what Jesus said to the man who called Him “good teacher.” “Why do you call me ‘good?’ No one but God is good.” (Forgive me for the paraphrase!)
    That’s something we all need to remember.
    Blessings, Bill!

  5. Preach it brother, preach it..