Today, we will begin the week with a simple verse that we have heard often, when we are inviting someone to share in the forgiveness of sins and to begin a new life with Jesus Christ.
Have you ever thought or wondered why living saved or being saved works for some but not others? How can that be when God says He loves the world and anyone who believes in His Son, would be saved? So why is it so challenging for some and others it seems so easy?
The other day a thought crossed my mind and a light bulb came on. The word of God says this:
That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9 (NKJV)
This scripture is often repeated or referenced when we are introducing people to Jesus Christ. Here is what happens…
WE REPEAT the scripture.
We are either asked to repeat this verse along with the minister or it is verbalized to us. The bible says confess AND believe. Confession is admitting that we have done something wrong. The word of God has an amazing ability to allow us to see our faults and how we have fallen short of God’s grace, but in such a loving way. We understand confessing with our mouths; that portion is relatively simple because the word of God lays our folly before our eyes in such a way that it draws us to the altar. Here is where the shift begins.
After we confess with our mouths the Lord Jesus…AND believe…
The word “and” is used to join words together. After we confess AND believe, then we will be saved.
Confess AND believe! Believe what? Believe the words that you received, from your heart. Believe that Jesus is who He says that He is. If you do not believe, you cannot be saved, and that is the difference! The principles of God stand on belief (or faith), otherwise, we cannot please Him.
…for whatever is not from faith is sin. Romans 14:23 (NKJV)
The difference between receiving salvation is the belief that you have received a new life in Christ. Belief carries an action. Let me show you.
- You believe that if you perform a specific task, 5 days a week (on average), 8 hours a day, you will be compensated either weekly or every two weeks. We call this a job.
- If your child demonstrates a natural ability or gift in sports or academics, the proof of your belief is the action you take to get him or her involved in additional activities to grow that gift, such as a summer camp, mentoring or lessons.
That is the separation. We confess and do not believe. We see our faults and issues but we take little to no action to support our newly found belief. Jesus says it this way:
These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. Matthew 15:8 (NKJV)
Once we confess and believe, then there are some actions that will follow:
- We want no parts of our old live and habits because we know the fruit it produces, so we separate ourselves (2 Corinthians 6:17).
- We have a strong desire to learn more about Jesus so we purchase a bible and study (Matthew 11:29).
Just like the example of cultivating your child’s gift, we must cultivate and grow our relationship with Jesus. We want to associate with people who can help us grow, learn and cultivate our spiritual life in Christ these are examples of our belief system.
Don’t just confess. Confession is only admitting what you have done; now you must prove that you believe Jesus can change you.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)