by Rev. Steve Nickodemus
Will the rules save you?
You can listen to today’s devotion by clicking on this SoundCloud link.
“For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law.”
We have all seen a set of “pool rules” before swimming. The author of the rules has carefully noted all the dangerous things you should avoid, to keep from getting hurt, so that you might have a pleasurable time.
If only all people would follow all the rules they would be safe and happy, but there is a big problem here. People don’t follow the rules. They run when they are supposed to walk, they engage in horseplay when they should not, and they often don’t respect other people while using the pool. So posting all the rules in the world does not make people safe or happy.
Saint Paul tells us exactly that in the verse for today. The rules of God are perfect and if people followed them they would be safe and happy forever, but people can’t and don’t follow God’s rules. We don’t love God with all our hearts, we don’t love our neighbor as ourselves, and we refuse to follow God’s will. All the rules in the world won’t save us, because we can’t follow the rules.
Thank God that He had a much better plan than just posting more rules. He sent His only Son, our Lord Jesus, who kept the law perfectly. He took our punishment for breaking the law upon Himself and saved us, not by our keeping the rules, but by His holy and precious blood.
Rules are good, but they don’t save you. Jesus saves you, and He has made us safe in Him and eternally joyful in His mercy. Trust in Jesus and follow Him!
Copyright Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Colorado Springs, Colorado