As a young boy I read a gospel tract. At the end of the tract was a place to sign indicating that you had prayed asking Jesus for salvation from sin. I remember thinking that God’s signature on that tract would be much more valuable than mine. After all, who could question God’s declaration that I had prayed properly?
Since then, more than five decades have passed. In those intervening years, I have discovered that God actually does provide His signature to verify our salvation! Oh, He doesn’t sign it on paper. Instead, He signs it on our hearts. What is written, there, is proof of what has or has not happened.
We have examined some key words related to salvation which are used in the Bible. There have been words which describe the problem of man’s sin before a Holy God. Others have dealt with the costly sacrifice of Christ needed to solve this huge problem. “Atonement” and “reconciliation” explain what Christ’s sacrifice accomplished for those who believe. Today we will discuss “justification” which is God’s signature.
Many think that to “justify” means to make one righteous. It doesn’t! The word “justify” means to declare one to be righteous. In the book of Deuteronomy God says, “If there be a controversy between men, and they come unto judgment, that the judges may judge them; then they shall justify the righteous, and condemn the wicked” (Deuteronomy 25:1). God says the declaration of the judge is to be a truthful declaration.
Consider the following two scriptures together. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9) “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only” (James 2:24).
Grace, not our works, is what saves us. The faith and works which emanate from our changed hearts are God’s declaration, to all, of the change He has wrought.
What is God declaring through the faith, thoughts, and actions of your heart? Are you saved?
Old Paths Bible Chapel meets at 107 East Calvert in Karnes City. Sunday school for all ages begins at 10 a.m. Family Bible Hour begins at 11:15 a.m. Please call 830-780-4440 or 830-865-3065 for more information.