The Commandment Of The Gospel

I John 3:23

            God’s commandment to sinners is, “That we should believe on the name of his Son, Jesus Christ.” If you would be saved, you must give up your hold on everything but Christ. Drop all trust in your works, all hopes in your prayers, all confidence in your feelings, and all peace founded upon your experience. Drop them all at once! Cast yourself upon Christ alone. His everlasting love, his precious, sin-atoning blood, his perfect righteousness, and his saving fullness will immediately flood your soul with peace. “Cease from self-confidence,” wrote C. H. Spurgeon. “Fall into the arms of Jesus. This is the major part of faith - giving up every other hold, and simply falling upon Christ.”

            Yet, that is the difficulty. The reason why you are yet without Christ is easily discovered. You will not give up trusting yourself. You are plainly commanded to trust Christ. Instead, you resolve to be more regular in church attendance. Certainly, if God has planted a gospel ministry near enough to you for you to attend, you should faithfully attend the public ministry of the gospel. That is God’s appointed means of grace for chosen sinners. “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” But do not substitute church attendance for faith. God’s command is, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.”

            Perhaps you have decided to read your Bible more and pray more. I commend your decision. By all means do it. But do not imagine that God will save you for your works. If religious duties are substituted for faith, they only increase guilt (Isa. 1:10-15). God will never accept them. Your soul will be ruined by them. Beware, lest it be said of you, “Ye search the Scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal life; but ye will not come to me that ye might have life.”

            Come to Christ by faith. Without him, you will perish forever under the wrath of God. Come to him now. Do not wait to have horrible convictions. Do not wait to be shaken over the mouth of hell. Do not wait for great feelings of distress and terror. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” The commandment of the gospel is an immediate, imperative necessity. It is your responsibility to trust the Lord Jesus Christ alone and to do so immediately. "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him" (John 3:36).

Don Fortner