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Why Would God Want to Save Someone Like Me?

 

When the devil entices a person into a sinful life, God never thinks, “That’s okay. I didn’t want him anyway.” Every lost soul brings tears to God’s eyes and pain to His heart. He wants all to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). “As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked” (Ezekiel 33:11). 

Still, some feel unworthy of God’s love. Why would God want to save someone like me? they think. It is not about us and what we have done; it is about God and who He is. There are four reasons God wants to save “someone like you”:

He made you (Genesis 1:26–27; Acts 17:28–29). We do not carelessly discard something handcrafted; neither does God.

He bought you (Acts 20:28; Ephesians 1:7; 1 Peter 1:18–19). He has a lot invested in you. His only Son’s blood was a high price to pay, but you meant that much to Him.

He has chosen you (Mark 16:15–16). God could have chosen to do His work on earth in any number of ways; but He has chosen to work through His people. If Christians do not tell others the gospel, they will never learn. In a world of billions, He desires that each one of his children tell others of His love.

He loves you (John 3:16; Galatians 2:20). God loves the rich, the poor; the educated, the uneducated; the up-and-coming, the down-and-out. God loves all sinners, every sinner, each sinner, everywhere, all the time. Most important, He loves you!

Yet many feel hopeless regarding the prospects of their salvation. Let us directly address four reasons some feel spiritually irredeemable:

“I have sinned too much.” 

Some think they committed so many sins so many times for so many years that they crossed a threshold beyond the point of return. They feel that God could never forgive so much.

It is true that sinners do not deserve forgiveness. “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23a). It is also true that no sinner is unsalvageable. Paul continues: “The gift of God is eternal life (6:23b). “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” (Isaiah 1:18).

There is no limit to divine grace. God’s boundless grace is sufficient for man’s ceaseless sin. Jesus even forgave Saul of Tarsus, who killed Christians and made havoc of the church of Christ (Acts 7:58; 8:1; 9:1–21; 22:16).

How many can be saved?

  • Whosoever believeth in him should not perish” (John 3:16). 
  • Christ gave Himself a ransom for all (1 Timothy 2:6).
  • Salvation appeared to all (Titus 2:11). 
  • God is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9).

Jesus wants to adopt you and move you into His house in heaven (John 14:1–3). Not all will come to God, but there is room—and a welcome mat—for all in heaven.

“I committed an unpardonable sin.”

Someone says, “I cannot be saved regardless of anything I do now, for in the past:

  • I murdered someone.”
  • I killed people in a war.”
  • I took a life as a drunk or careless driver.”
  • I spoke blasphemously against God and the Holy Spirit.”
  • I committed adultery and broke up someone’s home.”

Murder and adultery have serious consequences and must not be taken lightly by society or the church, but they are not unpardonable. David was guilty of both, yet he was forgiven after repentance and confession (2 Samuel 11–12; Psalm 51). Jesus sent the “woman taken in adultery” away uncondemned (John 8:1–11). Those who murdered Jesus were offered remission of sins—and about three thousand immediately accepted (Acts 2:36–41).

The basic definition of the “unforgivable sin” is simply rejecting the gospel. It is not a mere impulsive, rash exclamation against the Holy Spirit that once spoken condemns a person forever.

The Bible speaks of three kinds of sins:

  • Sins that have been forgiven (2 Samuel 12:13; Ephesians 4:32); 
  • Sins that are forgivable but are not because the conditions of pardon have not been met (Acts 3:19, 1 John 1:9); 
  • The unpardonable sin (Matthew 12:22–32; Luke 12:9–10).

Consider to whom Jesus said this. When Jesus taught on the unforgiveable sin, the Pharisees had just seen Him work a miracle, heard Him preach salvation, saw His perfect example, and were still so hard-hearted as to accuse Him of being in league with Beelzebub, the prince of devils. This showed a callousness that put them in great spiritual danger. A person who persistently rejects the New Testament evidence for Christ’s deity today (cf. John 20:30–31), in principle, exhibits the same Pharisaic attitude. If he does not repent, he will commit the unpardonable sin. 

Consider when Jesus said this. It was a time of transition from Old Testament law to New Testament gospel. At that unique time in history, it was possible to live in the latter days of God’s dispensation, continue through Christ’s life, and move into the Spirit’s dispensation.

  • Thus one could reject the Old Testament—even blaspheming God—yet repent and accept Jesus’ preaching and be saved. 
  • The same person might reject both the Old Testament and Jesus’ teaching—even blaspheming Jesus—yet later obey the apostles’ inspired preaching on or after Pentecost and be saved. 
  • However, if he rejected the Old Testament, Jesus’ sermons, and the Spirit’s words, there was no other coming dispensation. To reject the New Testament was to reject God’s last lifeline.

One who blasphemes the Spirit cannot be saved in that condition; so long as he remains a blasphemer, he has no hope of grace, mercy, or salvation. If one worries that he has committed this sin, it is unlikely he has, for he shows that he still believes in God, desires salvation, and fears being lost. If this motivates him to obey the gospel, he can be saved (Mark 16:15–16).

“I have not received a sign that God saved me, so I must not be of the elect.”

If you are of the impression that God flipped a coin and you lost, rest assured that He did not. If you asked God to save you and nothing happened, do not worry that He decided to reject you for some reason. If you heard that you speak in tongues if the Spirit saved you, do not fret. This is not the case. The sky does not change color depending on how much evil happens on the ground beneath it.
It is the same with God’s love.

Preachers influenced by Calvinism have taught many to expect a special miraculous call by the Holy Spirit (called “irresistible grace”) to save them and confirm that God elected (predestined) them to salvation. Such a miracle would violate four Bible truths:

  • God’s impartiality toward man (Acts 10:34–35; Romans 2:11).
  • Man’s free moral agency (Joshua 24:15).
  • God’s economy of government (1 Corinthians 14:40). Economy is the most expedient and intelligent system of operation. Is it easiest to save each man differently or to put the message in a book for all to read?
  • The principle and order of the great commission (Mark 16:15–16). Why send disciples to tell every creature of salvation if they cannot respond to the preaching? In Calvinism, the written Word has no power until the Holy Spirit makes the sinner respond. Why preach, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved” if one is saved by a miracle and baptized later? A subjective “better-felt-than-told-experience” is not to be trusted more than an objective understanding and complying with Scripture (Isaiah 8:20; 2 Timothy 3:16–17; 2 Peter 1:3; Jeremiah 17:9). 

The Bible teaches predestination (Ephe-sians 1:3–11), but not a Calvinistic version of it. This text says all blessings are “in Christ” and that we are chosen “in him.” To be in Christ is to be in His body, the church (Galatians 3:26–27; Ephesians 1:22–23; 4:4). In short, then, God predestinated that each person could be saved in the church. God voted for us; the devil voted against us; we cast the deciding vote.

“I have a sin I cannot quit.” 

It is true that we must live a holy life to enjoy God’s approval and fellowship (Luke 13:3; Romans 12:1–2). God’s forgiveness is not temporary, but we can return to a sinful life and lose our salvation (2 Peter 2:20–22).

To be addicted to a sin is a serious problem, but it is by no means hopeless. God made us some promises that help in this situation. Keep in mind that God is powerful enough to do anything He wants to do and is honest enough to do everything He promised to do.

  • God does not expect perfection. He looks for “good and faithful” servants (Matthew 25:21), not perfect ones. He knows we make mistakes. Solomon said, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not” (Ecclesiastes 7:20; cf. Isaiah 53:6). “If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?” (Psalm 130:3). John wrote, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves” (1 John 1:8). 
  • If we mess up and fall, we don’t have to give up; we can get up and start again as many times as we need. As His children, if we confess our sins we will be forgiven (1 John 1:9). If we are to forgive others seventy times seven times (Matthew 18:21–22), then how many times will God forgive?
  • If you have tried and tried but nothing works, remember that breakthroughs can happen even after years of failure. Ponder Paul’s simple promise: “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13).
  • Physical addictions are overcome by spiritual strength (Ephesians 6:12–18). God gives us the spiritual tools to overcome any sin. Weapons at our disposal include fasting (1 Corinthians 7:5), praying (Ephesians 6:18), Bible reading (Psalm 119:11), meditating on Scripture (1 Timothy 4:15), and the support of other Christians (Galatians 6:2).
  • When you feel you cannot win, read John’s assurance: “Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Also read Paul’s promise: “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Corinthians 10:13).
  • If you feel you are spinning your wheels, remember God is working on you and won’t quit. “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).
  • When you feel Satan is too strong, rest assured that he can be defeated: “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you” (James 4:7–8). Satan is a sore loser and will not leave us alone, but he fights a losing battle as long as we remain committed to God.
  • We must never quit trying to overcome (Galatians 6:9), make excuses (Luke 14:18), or cover up our sins (Proverbs 28:13).

Someone said, “People might criticize us, condemn us, gossip about us, find fault and nitpick us, berate or belittle us, accuse us, but God just loves us.” He wants nothing more than for us to succeed and make it all the way to heaven.

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For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.
Matthew 8:9
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