As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name.
There are four signposts that represent four truths you must acknowledge if you are on the road to Heaven. Signpost #1 is: We have a sin problem. We are all guilty before God. Signpost #2 is: God is sinless. He has zero tolerance for sin. What are the remaining signposts?
Signpost #3 is: Jesus is the solution to our sin problem. Imagine you are on a road trip and realize you do not have enough gas to get where you are going. Suddenly, a big tanker stops, and the driver opens his window and says, “This is your lucky day. I have all the gas you can possibly use, and I am going to let you have some of it.”
That is exactly what Jesus does for us. When Jesus died on the cross, two amazing transactions took place. First, Jesus took the punishment we deserve for our sins. God is so holy He cannot overlook evil. Nahum 1:3 says, “The Lord will by no means leave the guilty unpunished.” God demands that sin be punished. When Jesus died on the cross, in some inexplicable way, He took all the punishment from God that you and I deserve. Second, Jesus gave us His goodness that we do not deserve. That is why 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “[God] made [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” Because Jesus was the sinless Son of God, He alone can give us the righteousness we do not deserve. Romans 5:1 says, “Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
There is a fourth signpost–a final step you have to take–on that highway to Heaven, and that is to choose to accept Christ’s offer of forgiveness. Let’s go back to our imaginary road trip. You do not have enough gas to make it where you are going. Next to you is a gas tanker, and the driver has offered to put gas in your car. There has to be a point when you unscrew your gas cap and allow that tanker to fill your empty tank. And it is the same way in our relationship with God. You can believe that you are a sinner, and God is holy. You can believe that Jesus paid the price for our sins. But there has to be a time when God transfers the righteousness of His Son into your life so that when God looks at you, He no longer sees your sin; He sees the righteousness of His Son, Jesus Christ. John 1:12 says it this way: “As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name.”
We all have varying amounts of goodness in our spiritual gas tank. Some people have half a tank, some people have a quarter of a tank, and some are bone-dry. None of us has enough, but God offers His forgiveness to everyone who asks. It does not matter what you have done–God is able and willing to forgive you and to welcome you into Heaven if you are willing to ask. Romans 10:13 says, “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Who Will Be In Heaven?” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2016.
Scripture quotations are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. (www.lockman.org)