Practical Christianity: Part Four
The only way we can be saved is through the Lord Jesus Christ. He died on the cross to take our punishment for us. If we believe that, then He is our Saviour, and we are safe forever, for He has promised to keep us. But being saved is not all there is to the Christian life, any more than getting into a boat is the whole of a journey across the ocean. You cannot cross the ocean without getting on the boat, but if no one did anything after they got on the boat, it would be a queer kind of voyage. Some Christians are living that sort of life—just drifting around, without much of any purpose. That is not what God meant for us to do. He has a plan for us.
When men build a great building, they do not put the wood and bricks and cement together just any old way. They have a plan. Perhaps you have seen a builder's plans. They are usually what are called "blueprints,” great pieces of blue paper with white lines on them, showing just exactly how the building is to be made. God has a plan for your life that is just as exact as any blue print that was ever made. In Ephesians 2:10, we read, "And we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Just think—God made a plan for your life long before you were born. It is a wonderful plan, the very best that could be made.
Since God has a plan for you, what should you do? Some Christians make the mistake of thinking that they must run their own lives. What would happen, if someone who knew nothing about building, should come and try to build a great skyscraper? They would ruin the plans, and the building would be a failure. It takes someone who knows how to do a thing like that. And it takes Someone Who knows how to build our lives according to His plan. That Someone is God. We cannot build our lives the right way. Only God can do that.
What should we do then? The answer is in one great word. Yield. That means to give our lives, as well as our hearts to God, and ask Him to manage them. That means we will not have our own way, but His way.
Why should we give our lives to Him? There are many reasons. If Jesus died for us, we are not our own. We are bought with the price of His blood. He has justified us and made us His children. We have no right to keep on with our own way, when He has His way for us. His way will be a wonderful way, far better than any way we could plan. Sometimes we may think we could plan better, but that is a great mistake. He knows all things, and He will lead us in the right way.
First of all, we must give our whole lives to Him, saying, "Lord Jesus, Thou hast died for me, and I give Thee, not only my heart, but my life, to be all for Thee.” And then, day after day, hour after hour, minute after minute, we must keep that promise. Satan will tempt us to do wrong, but we must tell him no, for we belong to another. He, our Lord Jesus, is able to keep us and He will do it.
- Why do you not need to run your own life?
- Since God has mapped out your life for you, how does this teach you about the sovereignty of God?
- Can you see how the sovereignty of God has effected your life lately?
- Why are God's plans always better than our own?
- Although we are not saved by works we are still held responsible to be obedient. Take some time to think about how the sacraments and the word help us achieve this end goal of obedience and adoration of Christ.
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