Wednesday, March 11, 2009

To Whom do you thank?

The rear bumper of an automobile is a notorious place for stickers. You can learn a lot about people without ever uttering a single word to them by just reading the things they put on their automobiles. You can know their political views, their sense of humor, their school or military or religious backgrounds, etc. This particular one says, "Thank Jesus". Being rather concise and to the point, it is potentially packed with tons of theology regarding Christ's redemptive work and His Deity. We can safely speculate that this person is grateful for salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ because there are no other bumper stickers that contradict or impose on this one. This sticker conveys a proper eternal perspective on life. It possesses the right attitude of a Christian: Gratitude to Christ. In respect to the Holiness of God and the Total Depravity of mankind, we can see the extreme necessity for a Savior. To simply put it, D.A. Carson said, "Hell is being in the presence of God; heaven is being in the presence of God with a Mediator". Although the astute Puritan, Jonathan Edwards, did not like to put too much emphasis on gratitude, it is still a mark of a Christian. A dichotomous illustration for Edward's argument would be that Christians find God beautiful, and non-Christians find God useful.

Therefore, the question on Thanksgiving Day and everyday of our lives should be "To Whom do you thank?" Christianity is about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and a person's lifestyle should convey that relationship. Abiding in the Word daily, obedience to the Word, church membership, willingness to serve in the church, tithing, having a burden for the lost, constant prayer to God,desire for God's glory, and fellowship with other like-minded believers in Christ are a few evidences that manifest salvation of a genuine believer in Christ. These activities, my friends, do not save a person. These are just the fruit/product of genuine salvation. It is Jesus Christ who saves!! Repentance of sins and Faith in Christ is the initial step and lifetime steps of a believer. That initial faith and repentance comes by hearing the Word of Jesus Christ! It is profoundly stupid if someone professes to be a Christian and has no desire for any of those things, or if his/her life does not manifest any of those things. Before I start rambling into a serious soteriological monologue, let me close with a verse that is appropriate for the statement, "Thank Jesus". "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Corinthians 5:21 NASB) That verse, my friends, is the heart of the Gospel!!

Posted by ShoZu

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