Job 9:2

How can Man be Right Before God?

 This is a question that we all must deal with. Many try to be good for goodness sake but find out that they can’t do that all the time. Others simply give up and live for themselves saying that there is no God and this life is all there is. Still the question remains because deep down inside we know there is something more. We know we were meant to live forever.

 The simple answer to the question is that mankind cannot be right before God by any efforts of his own. Sadly though, this is the path that Job’s friends took in their attempt to help Job in his distress. Their council was that Job must have some hidden sin and if he will just do better and quit sinning God will bless him like he was before.

 Mankind cannot be right before God by keeping the Law, Oral or Written. The Law is given to show us that we are sinners and our efforts fall short of  God’s standard for righteousness. We need an advocate to stand between us and God.  Job understood that need. Man can only be right before God if his sin is forgiven.

 In 1 John 2 we are told that Jesus died for the sins of the whole world. God does not require us to be perfectly sinless to be accepted by Him. He knows that all the efforts we make, though well intentioned, cannot change our inner core. We may well change the outside for a time but our actions and attitudes are driven from within us and they leak out from time to time. Those actions and attitudes leak out because we believe they will work for us, given the situation we are dealing with at the time. This leads to trouble. Within us we believe what we are about to say and do will work and so by faith in what we believe, we speak, act out, or both, but then comes the fallout and the consequences. The Bible declares, “…the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23 KJV

Death in the Bible is separation. If our faith is not in Jesus our core is corrupted because our faith is in whatever we trust, be it politics, money, pleasure, and so on. When our faith is in something or someone other than God we are by definition separated from God.  We are dead to him. God wants us to be dead to the world and alive to Him.

 God has forgiven our sins. Jesus has paid for them on the cross. God doesn’t require us to be sinless to be saved.  He requires us to put our faith, that same misplaced faith we spoke of above, in Jesus.  God has made a way for us to put Jesus at our core and when we put our faith in Him, what we say and do, will start to change because we are now responding to Him.  This is what Jesus meant when He said we must be born again in John 3:7.  John tells us that Jesus is the Word of God, in John 1:1&2, 14. When we ask Jesus to forgive us of our sins and ask Him to take up residence in our heart, we are saying that we are giving up the old things we have put our trust in, and we are putting our trust in Jesus, the Word of God.

 Jesus desires to make us a new person. This must start from the inside and so He begins to change our core values and attitudes.  When our values and attitudes change they will start to show up in our words and actions. In order to do this when we believe in Jesus, He gives us His Holy Spirit to be with us, guide us and remind us of the Words Jesus has said. If we look at how Jesus related to the disciples we can visualize how the Holy Spirit wants to relate to us. He wants to lead us, change us, and to equip us to serve Him rather than serve the destructive ways of the world and the devil, who has deceived us into thinking we are living for ourselves. Make no mistake, we all believe in something and we all serve what we believe, so why not believe in Jesus and be a new creation? If we want to be right before God we must believe in Jesus and what He has done. We must take our faith from the things we have believed in before and put our faith in Jesus, making Him Lord of our life.

 In 2 Corinthians 5:21 we read that God has made the way that we might be righteous before God. The verse says, “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God”. NIV

To believe and to receive this is to put our faith in Jesus and what He has done. When we do this our faith is no longer “in the world” but “in Christ.” When we are “in Christ,” verse 17 applies. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come!” NIV

This is the way, and the only way, we can be right before God.

 In Luke 8 we read that one day Jesus and the disciples were crossing the lake when a storm came up and threatened to swamp the boat. The disciples cried out to Jesus who calmed the storm and then He asked them, “Where is your faith?” Luke 8:25 NIV This is a good question to end on. 

 Do you know where your faith is?

Pastor Dave