I want to share something that is probably nothing new to most of you, but our Lord has revealed an absolute, surefire way to become absolutely holy and perfect in his sight! All of us can live in absolute peace and joy! Why? Well, you can live in peace because when our Father sees us, he sees us as holy and pure — and all of it is a gift!
Even Paul was amazed. When he realized that His gift of holiness could never be a reward for anything we have done; he realized it was an unearned, undeserved favor— an outright gift! He told the church in Rome:
The way to receive God’s approval has been made plain in a way other than the laws in the Scriptures. Moses’ Teachings and the Prophets tell us this. Everyone who believes has God’s approval through faith in Yeshua Christ.
There is no difference between people. Because everyone has sinned, they have fallen short of God’s glory. They receive God’s approval freely by an act of his kindness through the price Christ Yeshua paid to set us free from sin . . . What can we say that we have discovered about our ancestor Abraham? If Abraham had God’s approval because of something he did, he would have had a reason to brag. But he could not brag to God about it. What does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and that faith was regarded as the basis of Abraham’s approval by God.”
When people work, their pay is not regarded as a gift but something they have earned. However, when people don’t work but believe God, the one who approves ungodly people, their faith is regarded as the basis of God’s approval. David says the same thing about those who are blessed: God approves of people without their earning it. David said,
“Blessed are those whose disobedience is forgiven and whose sins are pardoned. Blessed is the person whom the Lord no longer considers sinful.”(Romans 3:21-24; 4:1-8)
No, you do not earn your Salvation — your ability to enter the presence of Yahweh! No, but you do need to learn to submit! Huh? That’s right; submission is the only way into God’s holiness, submitting to the righteousness of Christ through faith. Now I know that sounds like double-talk, so I better explain what I mean. To submit means “to surrender the power of your will.”
Oh, you’re trying to trick me aren’t you? No, When we are talking about our relationship to Yehoveh, there is no such thing as willpower — all power is His and He will permit no other power than His own. He demands absolute holiness, and this demand will humble us!
Sure, we try our best to walk “holy,” and He patiently watches over our struggles. He is waiting for us to fail so miserably that we will run to His throne, fall on our knees, and cry out, “It’s hopeless — I will never be Holy! I am too weak. There is nothing good in me at all.” That is the kind of repentance He is waiting to see. He wants us to recognize and confess the weakness of our futile efforts and to deny that we have any power at all in ourselves.
I have some friends who are going through AA (but only because it was something the court ordered). But AA teaches that you must recognize you are powerless to deliver yourself — that you must have a “higher-power.” My friends were unwilling to accept that. They believed that they had all the power, and it is simply will power that would pull them through.
But they were never able to do that before, so how they thought could do it now, is beyond me. The sad reality is that some people have to fall on their face hard enough to accept that they do not have the power to overcome. As one brother said, “I went to Europe believing that would solve my problems . . . unfortunately, I went along.”
I don’t care who you are; you will never be clothed in Christ’s holiness until you fall on your face before God’s throne, naked, poor, wretched, weak, and totally helpless! You must once and for all admit you have no power to resist sin and that you have nothing to offer the Lord but a broken-down, defeated and helpless lump of clay. You must admit you can’t be Holy on your own. You must be given Holiness as a gift.
The Gospel Truth is that the greatest gift you can give to Yehoveh is your faith that he will clothe you in his Holiness. Isaiah exulted, “I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness . . . so the Sovereign LORD will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations” (Isaiah 61: 10-11).
I think Paul said it best when he declared, “I will brag even more about my weaknesses in order that Christ’s power will live in me!” (II Corinthians 12:9).
With these Morning Messages, I take you on guided tours to, as Bunyan described, the Celestial City. At times we linger at corners familiar and unseen. And explore the depths of our faith along the way.
The trail is long, but there’s no hurry. Though we do need to stock up on supplies for the way, and that’s where I need your help. If you enjoy these messages, please consider becoming a contributing member of this tour group. It will be very much appreciated.