Why Keeping the 10 Commandments Can Keep You Out of Heaven

As a kid, memorizing the 10 commandments was a big deal. Get em all down and in order and you got a ribbon. Maybe a sticker. Maybe even a prize.

And if you lived by them, wow! You were all that!

But that’s all.

If you’re into rule keeping, Christ didn’t die for you.

Well, actually he did, but he did so unnecessarily because you’re trying to make yourself “right” with God instead of relying on the “work” Jesus did on the cross to make you “right” with God.

Let me explain.

If you’re living by the 10 commandments expecting that to pay your way into heaven, you’ll only end up with a cute little ribbon on your chest. Cause even if you’ve memorized them perfectly, you sure can’t live them perfectly. No one can. And it won’t gain you any brownie points with God, so quit trying. If you use that man made system to get you into heaven…you won’t get in. Ouch!

Want to know what you can do to be saved and get into heaven?

Trade your man-made system for a God-made system. Here’s how the Apostle Paul describes it in Galatians.

Galatians 2:16:

We know very well that we are not set right with God by rule- keeping but only through personal faith in Jesus Christ. How do we know? We tried it– and we had the best system of rules the world has ever seen! Convinced that no human being can please God by self- improvement, we believed in Jesus as the Messiah so that we might be set right before God by trusting in the Messiah, not by trying to be good. (MSG)

Galatians 3:13-14:

But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” Through Christ Jesus, God has blessed the Gentiles with the same c blessing he promised to Abraham, so that we who are believers might receive the promised Holy Spirit through faith. (Bold text by the author.)

How do you receive the blessing of Abraham, a.k.a. “salvation” and everything that comes with it?

Faith. Not works. Faith. Not keeping the commandments. Faith.

Faith In Christ’s work, not your own! (Because your works just won’t do the job!)

Most Christian believers haven’t been taking advantage of the gospel (The New Covenant). They’ve been living under the Old Covenant, abiding by rules and laws to make them right with God. That’s basically living as if Jesus hadn’t come to save them and set them free from all those rules and work-related righteousness. If that’s you — give it up!

Discover what you have in Jesus Christ. It’s not about what commandments or rules you keep. It’s not even about how much work you do for the kingdom. It’s about the work Jesus did on your behalf. Let him save you. Cause you’re not good enough to save yourself.

Whew! That’s a relief!

Isn’t it amazing when God stitches a theme into your day? You just know He’s trying to get a message to you when everywhere you turn, you bump into the same information. It blows my mind that he cares enough to keep trying over and over again to get it into our thick skulls!

Early this morning, a friend sent me a tiny audio snippet of a pastor from Pennsylvania sharing a devotional about the name of Jesus. Then when I went to read my Bible this morning, my eyes fell on scriptures talking about the name of Jesus. And when I opened up the book I was reading, guess what it was talking about on the very page I left off at? Yep – the name of Jesus. Then I turned on my iPod. Guess what the first song spoke about? You see where this is going, right? Yes, Jesus.

With this theme stitched into my day, I was thanking Jesus for what his name means to you and me. I began putting his name above everything I could think of. Take a moment and go with me here, I encourage you to read this out loud. We can do it together and it will stir your faith:

Jesus, the name above all names…

Jesus, the name above loneliness.

Jesus, the name above chest pain.

Jesus, the name above a bad habit.

Jesus, the name above a toxic relationship.

Jesus, the name above a horrible toothache.

Jesus, the name above stress.

Jesus, the name above childcare struggles.

Jesus, the name above thyroid issues.

Jesus, the name above no food in the fridge.

Jesus, the name above fears.

Jesus, the name above cancer.

Jesus, the name above relationship problems.

Jesus, the name above unpaid bills.

Jesus, the name above excess weight gain.

Jesus, the name above a broken air conditioning system.

Jesus, the name above disappointment.

Jesus, the name above horrible work environment.

Jesus, the name above a flat tire.

Jesus, the name above unpaid child support.

Jesus, the name above sin.

Jesus, the name above death.

Jesus, the name above PMS.

Jesus, the name above poor grades.

Jesus, the name above a tornado.

Jesus, the name above a stock market collapse.

Jesus, the name above a house fire.

Jesus, the name above failed tests.

Jesus, the name above betrayal of friends.

Jesus, the name above your dryer breaking down.

Jesus, the name above no gas in the car.

Jesus, the name above depression.

Jesus, the name above aggravation.

Jesus, the name above bitterness.

Jesus, the name above a cold or allergy.

Jesus, the name above divorce proceedings.

Jesus, the name above _________________(Your turn.)

Jesus, the name that everything on heaven and earth bows to.

Philippians 2:10 says, Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

“Jesus” – his name means savior. He saves you from all this above and more.

Lifeguards Have The Will to Save 

I heard about this guy who is a lifeguard. He was asked if he’d saved many lives this summer, and he reported how many lives he had “saved.”

His friend said, “Your job must be exciting!”

The lifeguard said, “Nothing’s more exhilarating or terrifying or fulfilling than plunging into cold water, knowing someone’s life depends on me,” he said. “Nothing makes my heart pound like that. It’s the best feeling in the world, to burst through the waves with all my strength to pull people to safety, sometimes even against their will if they’re panicking. I wish I could do it all the time.”

Jesus, Your Personal Lifeguard

Know what? There is nothing more exciting to Jesus than to “save” you from your day or “save” you from your circumstances, and especially “save” you from your sin. He’s standing by. He’s a life preserver and will “save” you from everything nipping at your heels today.

So, what will you do with the Name of Jesus?

Put it above everything else!

 

As I was getting ready this morning my mind floated back to a care-free childhood. Ahhh, those were the days. Rest came easy. Not a care in the world. I had complete and total trust in my parents. They took care of my every need. I had a roof over my head, a really nice one (with biggest yard on the block!), nice clothes, plenty of toys, and lots of love from mom, dad, and my little bro. That was the life.

But then it ended.

It ended when I grew older and started “seeing”.

Seeing. It can cause us problems we didn’t have before we could see.

See what? See that my parents really didn’t have it all together. And that yes, there were times they walked through financial hardship and were smothered with stress. It’s just that as a kid, I had no clue. No clue meant it didn’t rock my little world. I continued to believe blindly therefore I was at rest.

Something happens when we begin to “see”. We stop believing in what the the Word of God says because we begin to “see” what circumstances say.

IRS: You owe the government money.

Word of God: God shall supply your every need. (See Phillipians 4:9)

Boss: You’ve made a mess out of this.

Word of God: Anything is possible for those who believe. (See Mark 9:23)

Doctor: You have an incurable illness.

Word of God: You have been healed. (see Isaiah 53:5)

Spouse: I don’t love you. I want a divorce.

Word of God: With God, anything is possible. (see Matthew 19:26)

Now, let’s connect this to my story. Regardless of my circumstances, I believed in my parent’s ability to provide for me and this gave me great peace. I went to bed every night completely confident that all was well. And it was simply because I believed.

Belief will help you rest easy.

It didn’t matter that my parents didn’t always have everything we needed. I believed they did, therefore I was able to rest.

There’s the key to resting like a child. Believe that you are taken care of and you will be at rest. It didn’t matter that they couldn’t always make ends meet. I thought they could. Therefore my reality was trust. And trust led to rest.

Now, imagine this scenario…

You really do have a heavenly father that has it all together. He owns everything on the planet. Nothing is out of his reach. He could slap a million bucks on you right now if he wanted to. There’s no need to worry. He has an unlimited supply.

So, then – we have a lot more to believe in, don’t we? Knowing God won’t fail us gives us even greater belief. And if you believe, you will rest. Rest in him. He really does have it all in the palm of his hand. You included.

The Word of God says: “Anything is possible for those who believe”. Not: “Anything is possible for those who see“. In fact sometimes the more you see, the less you believe.

Close your eyes.

Believe & you’ll rest.