Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:16)

There’s this common popular culture trope that in order to get into heaven, one must gather up enough good deeds to outweigh all the bad they may have done. As Christians, this is not how we are called to live our lives, counting our good and bad deeds to see if somehow we break even. This creates a legalistic mindset and puts us on the same level as the Pharisees.

We have been saved by grace, a free gift of God. Through faith, we are saved. Then as we are baptized by the Holy Spirit as he comes into our lives, we can have an assurance of our salvation. It is true that faith without any deeds is a faith that is dead, however, salvation is not achieved through works. Salvation is achieved through grace. Faith in Jesus Christ as the Messiah and Savior of the world is the most important thing, and when true faith comes so will good works.

Do not fear; God is faithful and just to forgive. Out of our faith grows changes in our lifestyles that show who we are in Christ. Out of our faith we are able to share the love of Jesus. Out of our faith do we know we are no longer slaves to fear and death. Out of our faith we can rest in all God has for us.

Recognize the confidence that faith in Jesus Christ brings to you.

Ethan Zent is a fourth-year student at Kingswood University studying worship arts, with a strong desire to share God’s love through song and word.

© 2020 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.

Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.