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Be Perfect!

Grace Religion Works Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2020-05-28

Scripture: Matthew 5:48

Author: Illustration Exchange
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ILLUSTRATION

"'Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.' When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, 'Who then can be saved?' Jesus looked at them and said, 'With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible'" (Matthew 19:24). 

God issues rules and commands not because He expects that we will be able to keep them, but because it is the only way to show us how far we all fall short. When God appeals to rules and laws it is to teach us that we shouldn't rely on rules and laws. 

APPLICATION

We naturally associate faith with religion, Yet, one of the remarkable things about Jesus' ministry was that he was always at odds with those who were the most religious. That's because, more often than not, religion focuses on what we have done for God. 

Jesus, on the other hand, focused on what God has done for us. He understood that religion is really about faith in one's self.  Rather than trust in human effort, biblical faith trusts in the mercy and forgiveness offered to us in Christ. 

Sadly, too many fail to see this. Blinded by their own pride, they end up self-righteously clinging to the rules. What these people fail to see is that God uses religion as a tool to create a dilemma that no religion can solve.

But the humble will see how they fall short and will begin to search for something more. They will turn from the hypocrisy they experienced in their own failed efforts to be good enough and search for grace.

And that's when, just beyond the condemnation of the Law, they find the mercy and acceptance of the Temple. That's when, just beyond Jesus' words “be perfect ... as your Father in Heaven is perfect,” they find a perfect Savior who goes to the cross to exchange his perfection for their sins (Matthew 5:48). 

Those who go beyond religion find grace, while those who get stuck in legalistic religion remain condemned by their own failures to uphold the legalistic demands of their religion.  Instead of ever saving themselves, they become trapped in the fruitless effort of trying to save themselves.  

If You Pay For Anything, You Pay for Everything

Grace Works Salvation Atonement

Contributed By: Allen Snapp | Date Posted: 2019-06-07

Scripture: Ephesians 2:8 ; Romans 11:6

Author: Allen Snapp
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ILLUSTRATION

I have a pastor friend who received a very generous offer from a family in their church. This family was going to Disney World and they wanted to take my pastor friend and his family with them. In fact, they wanted to treat them to everything: hotel rooms, meals, tickets into the park, everything they could possibly need to enjoy this trip as much as the host family did.

The guy offering this trip told my friend that he had one condition and one condition only: If you pay for anything, you pay for everything. In other words, try to pull out your wallet to pay for anything, and you are going to owe for everything. He insisted it was to be entirely his treat or none of it would be his treat.

That had the effect of keeping my friend's wallet in his pocket! He never tried to pay for a thing!

APPLICATION

Jesus died on the cross to pay for our sins; to pay the debt we could never pay; to earn for us what we could never earn for ourselves. And the resurrection of Jesus Christ declares that Jesus’ payment was accepted by God the Father.  As a result, everyone who places their complete trust in Jesus receives eternal life – and a place in heaven with God – as a gift. 

So when it comes to your salvation, it is important that we all keep our wallets in our pocket; that we place our complete confidence in Jesus' finished work on the cross. We must not attempt to add anything to the finished work of Christ, lest we empty the cross of its power.  If we attempt to earn your salvation to any degree, we are obligated to earn the rest.  As the Apostle Paul explained, "If by grace, then it (salvation) cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace" (Romans 11:6). 

In other words, if you pay for anything, you pay for everything. 

"For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast" (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Flat Tire Delayed 50 Miles

Works Salvation Salvation False Hope

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-08-22

Scripture: John 3:3 ; Matthew 7:23

Author: Illustration Exchange
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ILLUSTRATION

Bridgestone has introduced a new technology; a tire that gives you an extra 50 miles before it goes flat. Their promotional explains it this way:

“DriveGuard tires are specifically engineered to be able to take a puncture and keep you moving. Their supportive and tough reinforced sidewalls help ensure your mobility for up to 50 miles at speeds up to 50 MPH.”

APPLICATION

Here’s the problem with this new technology: You can be driving down the highway and not even know you have a flat! Isn’t this really just false assurance, only serving to delay the inevitable?  It helps no one to have a flat and not know it. 

Religion can do the same thing; it can be used to give us a false sense of assurance that everything is just fine as we cruise along to our final destination. And like a prick of the conscience, we even ignore the low-pressure light. After all, we go to church every week!  We drop a few bills in the offering plate!  We do these and many other things, only to arrive before God and find out that we have been relying on a false sense of well-being. 

Make sure you know the true state of your soul before you meet God. 

Don’t wait until it’s too late to find out you’re driving on a flat.  

“Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3).

“Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'” (Matthew 7:23). 

Woman Has Plastic Surgery To Avoid Debt

Responsibility Salvation Works Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-08-15

Scripture: Colossians 2:14

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Never Try To Catch The Catcher

Grace (Pictures of) Jesus, Savior Works Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-08-01

Scripture: Acts 16:31 ; John 19:30

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Which Is Harder To Get Into, Harvard or Heaven?

Salvation Works Salvation Grace

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-03-18

Scripture: Matthew 7:13 ; Ephesians 2:8

Author: Illustration Exchange
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The World's Most Perfect Food

Grace God's Care Works Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-12-04

Scripture: Romans 5:8

Author: Illustration Exchange
11

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The Undeserved Award

Grace Works Salvation Eternal Life

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-10-22

Scripture: Ephesians 2:8

Author: Illustration Exchange
11

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When Free Is't Free

Salvation Works Salvation Deceived/Deception

Contributed By: Jimmy Kiker | Date Posted: 2015-06-06

Scripture: Romans 6:23

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Sleep Tight Don't Let the Bedbugs Bite

Salvation Grace Works Salvation

Contributed By: Larry Lewis | Date Posted: 2015-01-12

Scripture: Ephsians 2:8

Author: Larry Lewis
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