Words On The WORD
Monthly Articles Grounded in Biblical Truths



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Subject: Salvation

Many of us are guilty of incorrectly using the adage, ”A miss is as good as a mile”. If we narrowly escape any type of accident, this seemingly applies. Actually this saying has an entirely different meaning, a meaning clearing defined by yet another saying - “Close, but no cigar.” Both sayings explain that a failure, regardless of the margin, is a failure.

People who throw darts or participate in archery often miss the bull’s eye by a fraction. Others narrowly miss a golf shot, slightly over-shoot a hoop, miss an ‘A’ by a mere point or lose a race by inches. Regardless of the circumstances, a miss is a miss, and it may even bring with it loss of temporary rewards.

Such is NOT the case with ‘missing’ God’s ‘mark’ of perfection – Jesus Christ! Missing this ‘mark’ brings with it permanent consequences! Unlike trophies and medals that will rust away, the outcome of missing God’s bull’s eye will last forever! But thankfully we’ve been given the exact and only trajectory required for ‘hitting this mark’! ‘Jesus saith…I am the way (to Heaven)…and the life (everlasting); no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) Jesus not only shows us the way; He IS the way!

So why do we miss? Sin! Interestingly the Greek word for sin (hamartano) is defined as to ‘miss the mark’. What an apt description! By allowing sin to blur our vision and cloud our focus, we can be convinced that we don’t need Jesus! Sin will persuade that any religion is suitable, the Bible is not divinely inspired, and any changes to God’s Holy Word are acceptable.

Sin can convince us to believe we can create our own path to Heaven through good works. Yet the Bible makes it abundantly clear that it is impossible to obtain salvation through our own efforts. Why? “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Why? “For by grace are ye saved through faith, and not of yourself; it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 11:6) Because “…we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses (good works) are as filthy rags…” (Isaiah 64:6) Sin steers us away from the ’mark’ and without Jesus we are unclean in God’s eyes (Matthew 23:28), and our works are insufficient and worthless.

Yes, works are an integral part of serving God, but only AFTER we have ‘hit the mark’ (accepted Jesus Christ)! “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16). But how can our works glorify Him if we don’t know Him? Only when we our secure in the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ will our works have merit! (James 2:18) But we must understand that ‘hitting the mark’ is not reaching sinless perfection. (Galatians 5:17) Rather, it is truly believing with a deep rooted faith that Jesus Christ carried our sin burden at Calvary (John 19:17), thus paying the debt for all our sins past, present and future. (Romans 7:18-23)

We either hit the mark (believe) or miss it (disbelieve). No margin of error or excuse reverses this fact! “For the invisible things of him (God) from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20) God has revealed Himself throughout all creation, so we are without excuse as was King Agrippa who, when upon hearing Apostle Paul witness, ALMOST “hit the mark’, but didn’t! (Acts 26:28) Regardless of his reasoning, he had NO excuse! Neither do we!

“For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth” (Romans 10:4) ‘Hit the mark’ and Jesus’ righteousness is applied to our account and eternal salvation will be ours. “Miss the mark’ and we will experience everlasting punishment as endless millenniums reveal God’s wrath. Separation from Almighty God will be forever, and the flames of judgment will blaze throughout eternity. (Matthew 18:8; Revelation 21:8) “And these (non-believers) shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous (believers) into life eternal.” (Matthew 25:26)

Let’s not be among the mass of wailing humanity who will forever dwell in the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:15), agonizing in everlasting torment, haunted by what could have been, all because we ‘missed the mark’ … perhaps by inches!

“…WE MUST BE SAVED.” (Acts 4:12)

Nancy Hamilton

© 2012 Words On The Word

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