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Friday, October 20, 2017 28° Some clouds

We cannot ‘edit’ our God

Published

By Nelly Favis Villafuerte

Nelly Favis Villafuerte

Nelly Favis Villafuerte

Today, we are bombarded with all kinds of information to enhance our human intelligence. As our intelligence increases, we gain more confidence questioning many things around us. Including the divine mandates in the Bible like God’s plan of salvation. People react in various ways to the plan of salvation laid down in the Holy Bible. Many agree with it. Others dispute it. Some are still deciding whether to agree or dispute it. In short, they are in limbo. The Holy Bible in clear and simple words says that: “By grace you have been saved through faith. . . it is the gift of God, not of works.” (Ephesians 2:8-9) Meaning that we are saved by God’s mercy, not by our merit – by Christ’s dying, not by our doing.

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Our problem is that many of us feel that there is something more we must do, something that we must add to God’s plan for salvation that is mentioned in the Holy Bible. Many of us think that God’s plan of salvation is so simplistic. Too easy. Speculating that God must have left out some other things that we must fill in. This is dangerous. Why? Because this is in effect amending God’s mandate. Many of us are forgetting that we cannot overrule Him. We cannot correct Him. We cannot demean God’s wisdom. We cannot “edit” God. Who are we to change, to add, or to delete God’s mandate?

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Religious groups should be careful not to change God’s plan for salvation. Otherwise anyone at any time can play around and tinker with this divine plan. Falling into Satan’s ploy to confuse people. Adding other conditions here and there to God’s plan of salvation.

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Good works is an overflow of being saved. But good works is not a precondition to being saved. Let me say again, though I’m repetitious, that it is a great insult to God to “edit” Him. The created cannot be greater than the Creator.

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Remember what happened to Lucifer? He tried to outmatch God. He led a coup against God. He lost. Today, Satan (Lucifer transformed) is still trying to outsmart God by cooking up all kinds of gimmicks to market hell.

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Assuming that good works is needed for our eternal salvation – what is the extent of good works that we are supposed to do to be saved – What’s our measuring yardstick? Is a paralyzed bed-ridden person disqualified from being saved – Because he cannot do a good deed for others? What about that criminal who was being crucified with Jesus who cried: “Jesus, remember me when You come into Your Kingdom.” The criminal had no more time to do good work before he was crucified. Did he go to hell? Certainly not. In the Biblical account, we see Jesus reassuring him that “today you will be with Me in paradise.” The repenting criminal uttered a confession of his own sins; talked of Jesus’ innocence, gave his complete trust to Jesus. Accepted Jesus as his Savior. And Jesus responded with love, compassion, and power. Not with condemnation.

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Jesus accepted the faith of the repenting criminal even at a late hour. The criminal did not do anything (no good works) except to cry out to Jesus his short confession of his repentance, and his belief and acceptance of Jesus. He exuded a faith in Jesus that comes from the heart. The Holy Bible in simple terms says: “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31).

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Let us not forget that God’s grace referred to in the Biblical verses on salvation is simply God’s love. God’s mercy. God’s blessing. It’s God’s unmerited favor. God looks upon us with love and forgave us even though we, being sinners, do not deserve it. Sometimes God’s grace is called God’s enabling power.

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God’s plan for salvation has not changed through all these years. As someone once said: “Salvation is a gift of God. Not something earned or won. God freely gives eternal life. To all who trust His Son.”

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This column continues to give out copies of the Holy Bible for free to those who cannot afford to buy their own copies. If interested, please send your letter-request to Ms. Nelly Favis Villafuerte, 5233 Fahrenheit St., Palanan, Makati City. Kindly mention if it is the Tagalog, English, Cebuano, or Ilocano Bible that is preferred.

Be joyful and forgiving! (Comments may be sent to Ms. Villafuerte’s email: villafuerte_nelly@yahoo.com.)

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  • ffjr

    A very good and wonderful piece of writing, simple but full of truth. It magnifies truly what the Holy Scripture wants us to know and understand. As in the Ten Commandments of the Almighty God, it reveals to us that He is a jealous God. What does this mean? He wants us to worship, kneel, and praise Him alone, that we should not include those whom he created only in our daily prayers . As an example let us look from the book of Acts, Chapter 10, verses 25 and 26, to read, As Peter entered the house, Cornelius met him and fell to his feet in reverence, but Peter made him get up” Stand up,”, ” I am only a man myself”. From a Catholic Public Domain Version, it reads ” and it happened that, when Peter had entered, Cornelius went to meet him. And falling before his feet, he reverenced. Yet truly, Peter, lifting him up, said, “Rise up, for I also am only a man.” Only a man means he is a creation of the Almighty God. Another example, 1 Timothy, chapter 2, verse 5, to read, For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus. Another, John chapter 14, verse 6, to read” Jesus answered, ” I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. ” I hope many of your readers will find time to read in full the Holy Scripture for God’s glory.

  • jfquinoveva

    One verse that can be read in the Bible cannot hold water. When Jesus said, “today you will be with Me in paradise.” it does not mean that anybody who repents will be like the criminal who spoke to Jesus. Remember that Jesus is the savior, and he has the authority to grant salvation to anybody or somebody who qualifies His yardstick. However, in the normal process of granting salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, one must possess Faith, Good deeds, Repentance of sins and Relation with the Lord Jesus. To have relation with the Lord Jesus, one must be included in the sheepfold or flock. Jesus said in John 10:9, ” I am the gate. If anyone enters through Me, he will be saved. He will come in and go out and find pasture.” The MOST IMPORTANT mandate of salvation is to enter the gate of a sheepfold or flock, because if you failed to do this, you are like a robber of salvation. This is attested by the Bible in John: 10:1 “Truly, truly, I tell you, whoever does not enter the sheepfold by the gate, but climbs in some other way, is a thief and a robber.” The saving power of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ covers only the sheepfold or flock and if you are on the outside, you are not covered by shedding of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. The sheepfold or flock is the Church of Christ which he has purchased with his blood as can be read in Acts 20:28 ” Take heed therefore to yourselves and to all the flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, to feed the Church of Christ which he has purchased with his blood.”(LAMSA) while it is true that God cannot be edited, the mandate of salvation is also cannot be edited.

    • TickVoie

      tanong ko lang po paano ka po ba makakapasok sa pintuan para po makabilang ka po sa kanyang mga tupa po?

    • TickVoie

      tanong ko lang po, paano po ba makapapasok sa pintuan para po mapabilang sa kanyang mga tupa po

    • TickVoie

      tanong lang po, paano po ba ang pagpasok sa pintuan para mapabilang sa kanyang mga tupa po?