If we're saved by grace, then why will our works be judged? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Well, hi, welcome to the program. I'm Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. This is the radio show where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. Our phone lines are open right now, and you can call us for the next 25 minutes or so. Here's the phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. By the way, we have a YouTube channel, and you can watch Adriel live in the studio right now on YouTube and every day Monday through Friday at 1130 a.m. Pacific time. So check that out, see what cool shirt he's wearing today.
And you can always email us your question at questionsatcorechristianity.com. You are kind of a fashion plate, you know that, Adriel. A fashion plate, huh? Well, I've never heard that, Bill.
But thanks, man. I mean, I just wear the same shirt every day, actually. Does your wife dress you, or do you pick out your own shirts?
Oh, I pick my own shirts. Come on, Bill. All right. Well, let's go to a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners earlier this week. Hey, Pastor Adriel. I had a question regarding the Sabbath. So my thought is that given that the Remember the Sabbath and Keep it Holy was part of the Old Covenant, my understanding is that today Christians aren't bound by that. So is it a sin to work and get paid on the Sabbath? So would that be considered a sin? Thank you.
Yeah, just quickly, because we just answered one like this earlier this week. So the Sabbath was a command given as a part of the Ten Commandments. These commandments are binding upon the people of God.
This is God's moral law. God calls us to worship him. And that looks like resting in him and in the redemptive work that Jesus Christ has won for us. I always like to go to the prayer that Jesus prayed at the end of Matthew 11.
He's thanking the Father for revealing these truths to the babes, hiding them from the wise and prudent. And then he says, Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. True Sabbath rest is found in Jesus Christ. And as believers under the New Covenant, we're called to live in that rest. And one of the ways we do that is by gathering together with other Christians for worship on Sunday. And so if you're a Christian, this is something that you need to be doing. God calls you to worship, to gather together with his people. And so I think that the way in which we're faithful to this command here now under the New Covenant is by resting in Christ and gathering with believers on Sunday to dedicate ourselves, devote ourselves to worshiping the Lord and growing together in holiness. And certainly if an individual is prioritizing work and making money and neglecting what we call the means of grace, gathering together with God's people to hear the preached word, yeah, that could very well be an issue of sin. That is an issue of sin. If we're just saying, God, I'm not going to listen to your call to worship.
I'm going to do my own thing. That's disobedience. And so we want to submit our lives to the Lord in all areas.
And this is one of them. God bless. Well said. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We're open to your questions about doctrine, theology, maybe any doubts you have about the Christian faith. Maybe you practice a different religion.
You have some questions about Christianity. Hey, we'd love to hear from you. Here's the number. It's 833-THE-CORE. Our phone lines will be open for the next 20 minutes or so.
1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Carson calling in from Birmingham, Alabama. Carson, what's your question for Adriel?
Hey, Adriel. Just a question of practicality. That is, how do we stay focused on the goodness of God when we go through trials or when it seems like everything's going wrong in our lives? It's really tempting to think that he's not good or that he's abandoned us.
So what are practical ways that we can stay focused on him? Yeah. I mean, such an important question. And you're right.
I mean, this is very practical. Of course, our Lord Jesus said in John 16, in this world, you will have tribulation. And we look at the lives of the disciples, the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. It was very clear that many of them suffered immensely.
Many of them were martyred, put to death. We look at the early church, read Jesus's letters to the churches in Revelation, chapters 2 and 3, and they're experiencing poverty, persecution, weakness. And so in our lives as Christians and individually, we do face these kinds of trials.
What do we cling to there? First, it's so important for us not to associate God's love for us with our circumstances, if you will. I think we can look at our earthly circumstances, whether we have wealth and health and so on and so forth. And we can say, okay, if I have these things, God loves me.
If I don't, maybe he just doesn't love me. But that's actually not at all what the Bible teaches. That's part of, I think, the error of the prosperity gospel, because it's convinced so many people that God intends for you to be healthy and blessed. And if you're faithful to Jesus, man, you're going to have money, you're going to have health and so on and so forth. But that's actually, again, not what the Bible teaches. It's about what Paul said in Romans, chapter 8. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?
And Carson, this is for you. Who will separate you from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written, for your sake we are being killed all day long.
We are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered. No, Paul says, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. I am sure that neither death nor life nor angels nor rulers nor things present nor things to come nor powers nor height nor depth nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Not the physical trials that we face. And so in the midst of them, I think we need to be reminded of the fact that, look, this does not mean that God doesn't love me. We are more than conquerors through these things, and God has exhibited his love for me so clearly in the fact that he sent his Son into the world to die for my sins, that I have eternal life through him, and that he is using even these trials to sanctify me, to mold me more into the image of his Son Jesus for my good somehow.
I don't know what that good is right now, especially when you're in the midst of it, but God is able to use this for his glory and for my ultimate salvation. And so I think we heed the words of the author to the Hebrews, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, Hebrews 12 one, let's lay aside every weight and the sin which clings so closely and let us run with endurance the race set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith. So it's clinging to Christ, his gospel, looking to him in the midst of the trials that we face, and not minimizing the pain and the struggle and the difficulty. God doesn't want you to brush it under the rug, but taking those things to him, lamenting while also trusting in his sovereign purposes for your life. And one of the ways I think, just again practically, is being in a good community where people around you can lament with you and mourn with you and point you in the right direction, because on your own, when we're all by ourselves, it's really easy to get discouraged.
And so having people who know us, who are a part of our lives, and who can speak the truth in love to us is so important. Carson, may the Lord be with you. Father, I pray for Carson in whatever it is that he's going through, or his loved ones are going through, that you would be with them. Thank you that you are the God of all comfort, that you comfort us in the trials that we experience. And so would you, by the power of your Holy Spirit, give him your comfort and help him to fix his eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of his faith? Bless him, Lord, I pray in Jesus' name. Amen.
Amen. And Carson, we'd love to send you a copy of the book, Core Christianity, by our founder, Dr. Michael Horton. If you'll hang on the line for a second and give us your contact info, we'd be glad to give that to you. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adrian Sanchez, and we have an invitation for you today to join a very special group of people.
Yeah. Brothers and sisters, I want to invite you to join The Inner Core. It's a group of people who support us with a monthly gift of $25 or more, and those resources go towards helping us continue to expand, to get the word out, and in answering people's questions, the difficult questions that they have about the Christian faith, giving insight into the scriptures and into pastoral situations that we know are an encouragement for you. And so if you've been encouraged and blessed, would you consider joining The Inner Core? As a thank you, we'll send you a copy of the book, Core Christianity, written by my friend, Dr. Michael Horton. It's a wonderful resource and just will continue to build you up in your faith. And for all of you who have joined The Inner Core, I want to say thank you again. Your support means so much to us.
It sure does. You can find out more about joining The Inner Core by going to corechristianity.com forward slash inner core. Again, corechristianity.com forward slash inner core to join that wonderful group of people who believe so strongly in this ministry and this radio program that they have made that commitment to make a monthly gift to keep us on the air.
So perfectly consider that if you would. Well, our phone lines are still open. If you have a question for Adriel about the Bible, the Christian life, doctrine, theology, you name it, we'd love to hear from you. Here's the phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. Here's a voicemail from one of our listeners. This is from Grace. My question is, if we're saved and our sins are all covered and they're under the blood, in Judgment Day, it talks about we're being judged for our good and bad works. So I don't understand if God's not going to remember our sins anymore, why there would be even bad works to judge. So that's my question.
Thank you. When it comes to our justification before God, this is something that is settled by faith in Jesus Christ so that we're not condemned. We're justified. The final judgment, if you will, has already been rendered in Jesus Christ. And this is why the New Testament says that those who believe in Jesus can be confident on the day of judgment.
I mean, if getting into heaven was dependent upon my works, who of us could have any confidence, especially when we consider the law of God, and yet we're told that believers can and should be confident. 1 John 4, verse 17. John, in his Gospel, records Jesus saying in John 5, verse 24 that we don't enter into judgment. That is, we're not condemned, but that the one who believes has already passed from death to life. And so there's no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Romans 8, verse 1. But so many passages of scripture do talk about works and the final judgment. And so how do we make sense of this? We are going to stand before God, and we are going to give an account for the things that we've done in the body, whether good or evil.
This includes everyone. I mean, it's what the apostle Paul warned about in Acts, chapter 17, verse 31. It's what Paul himself, speaking to the churches, reminded them of, places like Romans, chapter 14, verses 10 through 12. But that judgment isn't about being condemned before God or justified. We've already been justified in Christ. And so we are going to be commended, not condemned, for the good that we've done by the grace of God. And scripture speaks of these rewards, these gifts that God gives to his people. We don't have a lot of clarity as to what exactly that's going to look like, this commendation, this blessing.
But the Bible talks about it. And so our works, if you will follow us, not as the cause of our justification before a holy God. Those are the righteous works of Jesus Christ imputed to us by faith. But there is this language of reward. And so here's the way you can think about this as a believer. I'm not going to be condemned because I'm justified in Jesus Christ, but I will be commended for the good works that I've done. There are rewards that God gives to his people, and that's something we look forward to.
We don't fully know what that's going to look like, but we rejoice in the fact that God cares for us and is mindful of those things and will reward us on the day of judgment. I'm hoping for a tropical island, but I know I'll probably get a rock in the middle of the Pacific. Oh, yeah, like oceanfront New Creation property. I was just thinking, Bill, I'm not—no joke, I was taking a walk with my wife last night on the beach, and I just thought, man, in the New Creation, I wouldn't mind one of—I couldn't afford it now in this present evil age, but in the New Creation, maybe, you know, who knows? This is where I'd like to camp out.
I'll put in the request for you. Thanks, Bill. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. We still have time to take your phone call. If you've got a question about the Bible or the Christian life, maybe there's a passage of Scripture that's kind of got you stumped, and you'd like to ask Adriel about it. Here's the number, 833-THE-CORE.
That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to Eric, who's calling in from St. Charles, Missouri. Eric, what's your question for Adriel?
Yes, Adriel. First, I just appreciate you guys. Well, I just want to know if I can get any help or assistance of, say, talking and witnessing to some of my family members and friends. I have a lot of friends who are white and black, but for me as a black man, a lot of my family members, cousins, or friends are just so blinded by the liberal policies, and it's almost nothing you can say. Sometimes they almost get violent, to the point that they don't want to hear it. I have some scriptures, Isaiah 5 and 20, and different things, but I'm just puzzled how they could support things like racist Planned Parenthood started by Margaret Singer, the Negro Project, and things of LBGTQ, and things just obviously wrong. Some things are wrong or borderline, but these things are obviously wrong. Just any scripture, anything that you think that I might could say or use, or maybe to convince them, or how should I witness to them?
Just anything I can get extra. Eric, man, God bless you and your desire to minister to your family members and to bring them closer to Christ. Man, it's such a struggle, because I have family members and friends who I love who think very differently than I do on these issues.
We've gotten into conversations at barbecues and family birthday parties, that kind of a thing. It can be hard, but we do want to focus on what the Word of God says. We do want to present, I think, a compelling argument in whatever the issue is. Say we're talking about something like abortion and organizations like Planned Parenthood. One of the strategies that I use is just emphasizing, look, especially for people who are on that side of the political aisle, there is a strong sense of we want to take care of vulnerable, marginalized communities. When I'm having conversations with family members who embrace the so-called pro-choice movement, one of the things I highlight is, look, there's a contradiction here, because we're talking about a community, the unborn, that is so extremely vulnerable, and yet they're not receiving the care that they should receive.
We're dehumanizing them, frankly, is what we're doing. Presenting it in that way, I think you're trying to help a person to see the inconsistencies in their own view, and ultimately the reality of life and the value of life. There are passages of scripture that you can go to there. It's not going to be, I think, one verse, Eric. I think it's going to be prayer, consistent conversations, listening, and then seeking to engage thoughtfully with the Word of God, challenging maybe some of the faulty presuppositions, and also challenging, I think, this sort of idea that, hey, because I feel this way about politics, I just have to align myself with this party like a hook, line, and sinker, everything.
I have to buy into all of it, because you don't. The Word of God challenges us, challenges our beliefs, challenges the way we think about the world. I think even helping people see that these sort of political views, it's not ultimate. This is not where we get ultimate truth from. We need to go to the Word of God. Especially if you have family members who at least are professing Christians, who have a background in that, I think appealing to that, and saying, hey, this isn't just ideas. We're talking about what God says in His Word, what He calls us to, not just because it's right and true, because it is, but because it's good for us, it's good for society. Ultimately, you can debate about the politics, Planned Parenthood, all these things till you're blue in the face. You want to get to the Gospel.
That's the main thing. Not just stopping the conversation there, but wanting more than anything to get to the Gospel of Christ and your communication with your family members I think is so important. So friends, let's not be satisfied with winning arguments about politics or policies. That's not what Jesus calls us to do. He calls us to be lights in the world through the proclamation of the Gospel, and that's where you want to focus, Eric, focusing on the message of Christ as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who is gracious and merciful and forgives our sins and calls us to love our neighbors, including the unborn, those who are in need. So I think approaching it in that way is so important, and may the Lord bless you, brother, as you have those conversations to give you patience, grace, and wisdom and open the hearts of your loved ones to the Gospel of Christ. Eric, we appreciate you so much. Thanks for your call and thanks for your heart. Boy, that's great counsel for all of us, Adriel, as we approach this political season. Here we are a couple of months away from a major election, and there's going to be a lot of discussions around dinner tables and workplaces, and this is what we're called to. We're called to point people to the Gospel, to the truth of God's word and who Jesus is, and so thanks for that.
That's wonderful. This is CORE Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Just a note, we're going to be recording a second episode of the CORE after our live program ends, so if you weren't able to get through, you can still call us for the next 35 minutes or so with your question at 833-THE-CORE. That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to David calling in from Washington, Missouri. David, what's your question for Adriel?
Yeah, I have a question. My wife was in a very abused marriage in her early days, and she was very, very afraid, and she got pregnant. She was very afraid of the child being abused.
She ended up getting out of the marriage, but it was a very abusive marriage, and she had an abortion because she was so afraid. Someone told me that abortion is a mortal sin and that she would not go to heaven because she had an abortion. Both of us are very, very, very Christian.
We read the Bible every day. We tried to be good people. I feel by the grace of God that that child did go to heaven because God loves all of His children, unborn or even born. But I guess my question was, someone told me that she wouldn't go to heaven.
I was with her when she died. It was a very, very, very religious experience. The Holy Ghost entered me. It's hard to explain how, when the Holy Ghost actually enters into you.
It was a hair-raising experience. I felt Him come into me, go into my arms, into her when she died, and I do feel she went to heaven. But I guess my question is, is abortion a mortal sin? David, I am sorry to hear about the death of your wife, and I'm sorry to hear about the abusive relationship that she was in, and the abortion, all of those things. To your question specifically, is abortion the unpardonable sin?
Well, the answer to that is no. The only unpardonable sin is the rejection of the Gospel, unbelief, if you will. And when Jesus talks about the unpardonable sin, it is in the context of the religious leaders who are accusing Him of being demon-possessed. I mean, they rejected Him.
They wanted nothing to do with Him. I'm grateful to hear that you and your wife loved Jesus and pursued Him and sought to know Him through His Word. And so we have the comfort of, it's not that we get into heaven because we haven't done heinous and horrible things. We've committed terrible sins. We don't want to minimize the gravity of our sin. And there are two places that sin is taken seriously.
I've heard it said in hell and at the cross. And our sins were taken by Jesus. Sins like abortion? Yeah, sins like abortion. On the cross, where He endured the judgment that we deserve so that we could have life and be forgiven. And so, brother, if your wife believed in Jesus, trusted in Him, confessed her sins to Him, you can have confidence.
And I'm grateful that you had this sense of the Spirit's presence there with you, comforting you in that moment. But I don't think that you need to think that or believe that she's in perdition because of this sin, because that's not the unpardonable sin. All manner of sins and blasphemies will be forgiven the children of men as we go to the Lord and we ask for His forgiveness sincerely. And for those of you listening right now, maybe you've done something you think, I don't know if I could ever be forgiven. Look to Jesus, turn to Him, trust in Him, and receive His grace for you.
His blood is sufficient for you. Thanks for listening to CORE Christianity. To request your copy of today's special offer, visit us at corechristianity.com and click on Offers in the menu bar. Or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833-THE-CORE. When you contact us, please let us know how you've been encouraged by this program. And be sure to join us next time as we explore the truth of God's Word together.
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