One Step to Peace with God

Sometimes Baptists would come to our door in Ft. Lauderdale passing out gospel tracts. They would share Jesus and tell us all we had to do was believe. My mother and I would shake our heads holding to our RLDS beliefs that we must have faith and works to go to have peace with God.

I don’t know if the Baptists at the door did a poor job explaining God’s plan of salvation; or if we just did not understand because our Joseph Smith lens. Scripturally speaking I know better today. We were spiritually blind and could not accept the things of God.

Faith alone was foolish to us.

Today, I am a Baptist. Funny how God works. The very gospel we smirked about is the very gospel that saved me. I now have peace with God. All it took was one step. One step as Romans 5:1 states, “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (ESV).

My past misunderstanding was that I was defining belief as mere intellectual assent. Belief, as I understood it when those Baptists came to our door, was simply saying “I believe” which was just like saying “Abracadabra” and all of a sudden your heaven bound! I was wrong. Believing the gospel of Jesus Christ is more than repeating “I believe”. In fact, any true belief changes the way we think and act.

Believing the gospel is truly believing that Jesus Christ was crucified for our sins and raised from the dead. Upon that true belief, that saving faith, God counts our faith in Christ as righteousness. Christ got our sin, we get His righteousness through faith. Because of faith we are justified before God – declared not guilty on account of Jesus.

This one step of justifying faith allows us to live in true freedom with no fear from God’s wrathful judgement. Instead, we have peace with God through the Lord Jesus Christ as Romans 5 quoted above states. Christians truly have, and should live as if, they truly have true peace with God through Christ.

The faith-filled first step to peace with God should be the first joy-filled step into a new life through Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1 is a great Scripture to meditate on when the Christian life becomes joyless.

In whom is your faith?

For what it’s worth…

Mark

 

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