Hi, this is Bernie Dake. Welcome to the Salvation Army's Words of Life. Welcome back to Words of Life. I'm Cheryl Gillum.
And I'm Bernie Dake. Since January 9th, we've been in an 11-week series studying the 11 doctrines of the Salvation Army. Retired Officer Colonel Dan Starrett has joined us to discuss these doctrines in light of the culture that we live in today. Yeah. And this week, Dan studies the doctrine that we believe that we are justified by grace through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. One thing that we really want to make sure you understand is we don't believe in faith by works, but certainly faith without works is dead. Right.
So just a little plug there so you understand, the Salvation Army, of course, is an organization that knows how to work. There are people that have referred to us as Christianity with its sleeves rolled up, but that doesn't get you into heaven. Right.
And that's a difficult thing. This is why we have our doctrines. We want people to know that not only are you justified by grace through faith, but if you believe, you will have the witness in yourself. I mean, there will be evidence of your faith that will come out of your witness, in a sense.
You'll know. Right. And that has to be lived out every day. Amen. Every day. It's just not that one-time experience that happens of salvation. We live by faith every day.
Yeah. Well, again, all these doctrines can be found in one place at salvationarmy.org forward slash doctrine. And we will also have these on our Words of Life page on our website, salvationarmysoundcast.org. Hey, and can I say, we'd love to hear some of the questions that you have that might have come up through this series. So if you did have a question, send us an email.
The email address is radio at uss.salvationarmy.org, or you can call us at 1-800-229-9965. Listen, I promise you, they share these questions with us. We want to respond.
We want to know if we are actually reaching you, the listener, or getting to the bottom of the questions that you might have. It would be really good for me to also say, if you live in a town where there is a Salvation Army, if you live in a city where there is a Salvation Army, reach out to someone locally as well. They'd be glad to speak with you. My lips unclear, my sins disgraced. And you have thrown yourself through me. And here I stand by grace, your grace. And here I stand because of your grace. Welcome to our continuing study of Salvation Army doctrine and its application to our daily life. Let's look at doctrine number eight. We believe that we are justified by grace through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, and that he that believeth hath the witness in himself. The sacrifice and atonement of Jesus Christ, his crucifixion and death and resurrection, has provided for the forgiveness of our sins and is the basis of our salvation. But there is another result that came from the sacrifice of the blood of Christ upon the cross, and that is our justification.
That's a big word and not something we use in everyday life to talk about being justified. What happened in the Garden of Eden was we lost the perfect sinless relationship between God and man because of the sin and sins of Adam and Eve. Where there were once times of meeting and being together in the cool of the day, sin destroyed our ability to have that relationship and stand before God. We lost our righteousness or our right ability to stand before and with God, and the only way for it to be restored is the pardon of our guilt and penalty of sin and to be declared righteous and justified by God. Romans chapter 5, 8 and 9, But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
Imagine that. He still knows what we are like, and he sends Christ to die for us. And since we have been made right in God's sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God's condemnation. Well, the New International Version of Romans 5, 9 says this, Since we have been justified by his blood.
The only way we are justified or can be justified, that is, having the right privilege, honor, and joy to stand before and in the presence of God, is by being justified by God's redeeming undeserved grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and his blood sacrifice upon the cross. It's amazing how mankind is continually trying to justify their attitudes or justify their actions or their feelings just about anything and everything. I'm surprised about how people try to justify their behavior or relationship to God. One of the many ways that people try to justify themselves is they compare themselves with other people. Isn't it interesting that we often will compare ourselves with someone of less character or devotion and commitment and then declare, well, I'm better than that, but they don't compare themselves with the required standard of Christ.
People try to use their education, their vocation, or their reputation or their family situation, who their mother and father might be. They try to use their finances or other things to justify why they are, quote, just as good or just as religious or work just as hard or give just the same amount of money, as though that is the justification that God is looking for. The Bible clearly teaches that we have been justified by his blood, and it has nothing to do with ourselves or in ourselves. It is an amazing gift of the grace of God.
Our righteousness, that is, our standing with and before God, is only through the blood of Jesus. You can't buy it. You can't earn it.
You can't work for it. You can't inherit it, and you can't attend church enough to get it. It must come through the commitment of our faith in Christ and through the sacrifice of Christ's love and blood upon the cross. No matter how many times and ways you can try to justify yourself or your attitude or your relationship with God or Christ and others, we know down inside each of us if we, first of all, are a Christian, if we've been forgiven of our sins and received God's forgiveness and then know we've been justified. That's the meaning behind the second part of doctrine number eight, where it says that he that believeth hath the witness in himself. See, we know down inside if that witness is there. You now know right now if the things I'm talking about are just in your head or in your ears or is it in your heart?
Is it your experience or is it just talk? That's when you know you have the witness within yourself. Each of us knows right now by our faith and forgiveness by the Lord Jesus if we're justified by God's Holy Spirit. His Holy Spirit confirms with our spirit that we are the children of God. Romans chapter 8 verse 16 says the Spirit, that is the Holy Spirit, himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. The amazing power and indwelling Spirit of God confirms it.
We know. We know inside ourselves and testify to it that we are his children. Folks, you either know or you don't.
You can't guess at it. God's Holy Spirit will confirm it. The relationship, privilege, and honor that was destroyed by Adam and Christ is once again restored by God justifying us through the blood of Christ. He does it outside and for us. It has nothing to do with us. God is seeking us before we even desire to seek him. So it awakens us.
It convicts us. It convinces us of our salvation that enables us to respond and see Christ. When we believe that we have the witness of salvation through Christ and faith, we then can have the assurance of our relationship and fellowship and salvation. When we believe that we have this witness of salvation and grace and faith, we can have the assurance of our faith and salvation and fellowship with Christ. It is the Holy Spirit who confirms within us the seal and truth of our salvation. We can know that our regeneration and justification are based upon biblical promises and not moods or feelings. One of the biggest questions that I'm often asked, is it possible to really know that you're saved? And the Bible clearly says, for example, in 1 John 3 and verse 24, those who obey God's commandments remain in fellowship with him and he with them. And we know he lives in us because the spirit he gave us lives in us. He comes and lives in the temple that God has made within us. That's when we know we have the witness in ourselves.
So, what's our pick and choose for doctrine 8? Are you trying to justify yourself? Are you trying to convince yourself of the witness that you have because you had some feeling once or you did something once?
If you're trying to pick your own justification, you don't have one. Choose salvation in Christ and he will justify you and give the witness within you that is true by his precious blood. God bless you. The Salvation Army's mission, Doing the Most Good, means helping people with material and spiritual needs. You become a part of this mission every time you give to the Salvation Army. Visit salvationarmyusa.org to offer your support.
And we'd love to hear from you. Email us at radioatuss.salvationarmy.org. Call 1-800-229-9965 or write us at P.O.
Box 29972, Atlanta, Georgia, 30359. Tell us how we can help. Share prayer requests or share your testimony. We would love to use your story on the air. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes or your favorite podcast store and be sure to give us a rating. Just search for The Salvation Army's Words of Life. Follow us on social media for the latest episodes, extended interviews, and more. And if you don't have a church home, we invite you to visit your local Salvation Army worship center. They'll be glad to see you. This is Bernie Dake inviting you to join us next time for The Salvation Army's Words of Life. Music
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