Once It's Broken It's Broken Forever
"...knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified." Galatians 2:16 But WHY can't a person be justified by the works of the law? Many, many people are smugly confident of their salvation because they feel they have kept the laws of God. But the Scriptures tell us that they are NOT saved by having kept the laws of God, BECAUSE we live in a fallen human nature and that fallen human nature is not CAPABLE of keeping the laws of God. All of us sin. And once you sin, the law is broken and you can no longer claim that you've kept the law. The law is like a glass - once it's broken, it's broken. There is no remedy for it. Doing good is not going to balance it, it's permanently broken. You can't unbreak God's laws any more than you can unbreak a broken glass. A man might say then, "well I'll confess and receive forgiveness, and then I'll try again." How many times then will you go through this process? Sin, confess, sin, confess ...and think that this is the right way? It ISN'T. No, the right way is to place your FAITH not in yourself, not in your ability to keep the law, but in the One who DID keep the law, but was crucified in the place of those who can't. Jesus Christ bore the terrible judgment on our sins - in our place. He offers the GIFT of righteousness to those who will place their faith in HIM. Does this mean then, that you simply put your faith in him and then go on to sin freely? Of course not. It means that when you put your faith in him and have been born again by his Spirit, he puts his Spirit in your heart and you receive a new life, a new mind, and a new desire to walk in the Spirit so that you will no longer fulfill the lusts of the flesh. Upon being born again, a person will begin to see changes in himself, and after awhile he will be amazed at the changes the Spirit of God brought about in him and in his life, not by effort, but by being born a new creature with a new heart. "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 From this point on, everything becomes new to you. Your sin has been judged on the cross of Jesus Christ. You are no longer under the law, but under grace. You no longer try to keep laws because the laws of God have been written in your heart and you are then, relying on his Spirit in you to create in you a clean heart and to renew in you a right spirit. If you have tried and tried and tried to be "good" but find yourself constantly failing, then realize that this is just not going to work. It can't. You will continue the process until you come to the conclusion that you simply cannot get it right. If this is you, then apply the ONLY remedy: Pray with me: Father God, I have tried to be a good person but I keep failing. I cannot control the sin in my life. I realize now that this is because I was born into a fallen human nature that is not ABLE to keep the laws of God. Just when I pride myself in having done something right, then something wrong follows and I am defeated. I've gone through this process countless times all to no avail. So now I come before you and freely admit that I am a sinner and there is no way I can change that. But YOU have provided the remedy, Lord Jesus, when you hung on that cross and received in yourself the judgment on MY sin. Your Word says that if I place my faith totally in you, that I will be born again and your Holy Spirit will gradually change me from the inside out. Please hear the cry of my battered soul and grant me to be "born again" so that I can rejoice in the victory you and you alone provide. I confess my sin and ask you to forgive me and become not only my Savior, but also my Lord. Take over my life. I place all my trust in you. I surrender all to you. "Be of sin the double cure, save from wrath and make me pure." -Lyrics From 'Rock of Ages' What Does "Born Again" Mean?