Friday, November 11, 2011

The Works of the Flesh Do Not Justify Us

Today I read Galatians 2 where it seems like Paul is trying to convince the Saints that the Gospel of Jesus Christ does not require them to be circumcised. Paul spends quite a bit of the chapter on that and explaining his missions that he has been on. He concludes by talking about how we are saved which is what I want to focus on.

Paul talks about how we are saved by our faith in Christ and not by works of the law. And he is exactly right. It is interesting to me however, that people cannot reconcile this with the other scriptures such as John 3:5 which tells us we have to be baptized. Some people seem to think that since we cannot be saved by the law of the Gospel, and we are only saved by our faith and by the grace of Jesus Christ, therefore we don't have to do anything but believe. This is completely not true and Jesus Christ Himself tells us that it is wrong. Jesus tells us that we have to baptized in order to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus was even baptized.

We have talked about this in the past but it is so important that it bears repeating. We are saved by the grace of Jesus Christ and nothing else. There is nothing we can do to save ourselves because we are all imperfect creatures and we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of Heaven. It is through His Atonement that we are saved and nothing else. However, that being said, God has revealed to us that there are certain things we must do to take advantage of the grace of Jesus and be saved, such as baptism.

Now, Paul mentions that by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. But that is not why we perform these ordinances. We perform them for a few reasons. One, because God has commanded us to. That is the most important reason. However, why does God command us? Well for starters there are rules that God has to follow also. But also, when we obey the commandments of God and perform the sacred ordinances for ourselves and then by proxy for others, we change. We allow the Spirit into our lives and can become better people because of it. So even though the ordinances aren't what ultimately saves us, they most certainly are a necessary part of of salvation and it is impossible to take full advantage of the Atonement without them. We have talked before about how we need to change who we are and our nature if we are to become like God is and gain the ultimate prize of life with Him in the Celestial Kingdom. That is my goal and it is what I am working towards. All of us are working towards what we want based on the kind of life we are living. Are you heading in the right direction? Until tomorrow.

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