ARE THERE FEW THAT BE SAVED?
By Curtis Pugh
By Curtis Pugh
“Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able,” (Luke 13:23-24). Here is a question put to the Lord Jesus. The Lord's answer given in brief is further expanded in the following verses. But in essence the Lord Jesus gave the answer that He, the Master of the house will say to the majority, “I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity,” (Luke 13:27).
Outwardly many of the Jews were observant: i.e., they kept the rituals, ceremonies and lived according to the Old Testament Law given to them. Many people in America today are like those Jews. They go to church. They have been baptized. They partake of the various elements in the supper. They do their best to “live right” as they say. And by these good works which they do they salve their consciences and think to earn favor with God so they can go to Heaven.
Consider what Paul had to say about the Jews of his day. He wrote: “But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law,” (Romans 9:31-32). Further along, Paul wrote: “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth,” (Romans 10:3, 4). Just like those Jews, today many church folk as well as non-church-going folk think to ingratiate themselves with God by their works. In seeking to establish their own righteousness, they refuse to submit themselves to that righteousness provided by God through the work of Jesus Christ. Rather than trust completely in Him, they trust in themselves either in whole or in part.
“Look at what I have done,” they say. They may think that their “going forward” and praying a prayer is good enough to get them saved. They may think that being baptized will birth them into God's family. They may think by living according to the “golden rule” or by obeying their consciences they can escape God's just wrath – which is the judgment all are due because of their sin. But such things will not work and only make those feel good who have never felt the guilt of their sin. In contrast, those whom God regenerates see themselves as bankrupt sinners who are unable to do anything toward their salvation. They are caused to see that it is “by grace are ye saved through faith,” (Ephesians 2:8). This means it is, “Not of works, lest any man should boast,” (Ephesians 2:9). What do you see about yourself?
Grace Bible Baptist Church
26080 Wax Road
Denham Springs, LA 70726