The Problem With Goats – by Eliezer Gonzalez

Jun 3, 2016 2659

GUWG-Sheep-GoatHere is where some religion all too often gets it wrong. This is the kind of religion that wants to avoid sin and condemnation, and so it focuses on what good things you should do in order to not be lost. The logic is that you might do some bad things, but if you do enough good things, it will all work out in the end. So do as many good deeds as you can!

However, the teaching of Christ is strikingly and shockingly opposed to this idea. In fact, what Christ taught was so radical that it pulls the rug from under everyone who tries to go down this road.

Because Jesus Christ taught that it was not what you do that condemns you, but what you don’t do!

Remember the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats? At the end, the King says to the goats (the people who are lost):

Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me (Matt. 25:45).

The problem with the “goats” is that they throw up all the things they have done. But none of those good doings register with the King at all.

What “you did not do” – that one sentence makes every one of us unavoidably lost and condemned eternally! For which one of us can say that in every situation that we have faced today we have absolutely done everything right that we should have done? None of us can say this.

If salvation were about doing, it might be easier! But Christ teaches us that there is nothing that we can do that will avoid our condemnation. He shows us the depths of our sinful and lost condition. (See also James 4:17). All of our good doing cannot ever mitigate against the things we should have done.

It is time to stop believing, at even whatever tiny level we might believe, that the basis of our salvation is dependent on what we do. It is time to find rest in Jesus:

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls (Matt. 11:28–29).

When we understand that our salvation is only through what Jesus Christ has done, then we will be entering into this rest that he has promised. And it is then that our good deeds will be the simple, outpouring of our Spirit-enabled gratitude and joy.

– Eliezer Gonzalez



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