"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus."Romans 3:23-24
We’ve all occasionally acted a certain way to prove we belong to a group. In nearly every sector of life, people do this… even in our churches! We will smile and try to do or say the right things in order to look like good “church people.”
Inmates in prison sort themselves into groups, too, based on race, language, religion and a number of other criteria that can be the basis for making the cut. If you don’t make the cut, there is not much you can do about it, unless someone else – a trusted member of that group – vouches for you.
If we try to work our way into God’s family, we’ll run into a similar situation. No matter how hard we try to look like we belong, our best efforts don’t even come close to “getting us in.” The Bible says that we all have sinned. People marked by sin aren’t fit for God’s family. But He has made us fit! Our good news is that we have a friend on the inside, and His name is Jesus Christ. When we trust in Him, He cleanses us by His grace, vouches for us, and warmly welcomes us into His family.
Come, just as you are to worship
Come, just as you are before your God
(Brian Doerksen, 1998)