Friday, August 28, 2009

Eternal Life: Adjusting Your Focus

READ Romans 6:23

Many believers can almost instinctively complete this statement: “For the wages of sin is _blank .” Hearing that sentence, perhaps you even said that last word out loud: death. We all know what that means. This passage in Romans 6:23 declares what we deserve for our sin. This is how we view ourselves from time to time—dirty sinners who have narrowly escaped a horrible death.

The problem here is too many believers remember just the first half of that verse—the part that deals with our sin. When we focus on the sin rather than the solution, our entire spiritual perspective gets off balance. Emphasizing the sin directs all the attention to self—what I have done, how I have acted, where I have been. This self-centeredness will never lead to the peaceful assurance of the salvation our Lord has provided.

When we focus on ourselves, we leave little room for God. So, as we read Romans 6:23, the Lord doesn’t want us to “zero in” on our problem. Instead, we should focus on His solution: “But the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” This passage is not a condemnation for sin, but a proclamation of salvation! The apostle Paul boldly declares God saw our dire situation and acted on His own initiative to rescue us from a horrible sin-death.

Our Heavenly Father graciously handed salvation over to us as a free gift. And when Almighty God gives a gift, no one can ever steal it away. Nothing can interfere with its permanence. (Romans 8:35-39) That’s the assurance our Lord wants us to have.

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