Just Trust Jesus…

If you’re familiar with Romans at all, you know that one of Paul’s main points was that the Law, as given to the Israelites, was a message of righteousness through works. As you know, such righteousness was inattainable by man… even the best of the Law followers (the Pharisees) failed miserably. If you’ve read Romans, you’ll also know that Paul preached the truth… that righteousness comes solely by the grace of God, and is granted as a gift to those who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ.

With this background in mind, we continued our study of Romans this weekend in Sunday School, diving into chapter 10. In our study guide, we came across a question that, at face value, seemed pretty straightforward:

Why should it be easier to trust Jesus than to keep the Law?

Now the point of this question is obvious… the Law, with its hundreds (if not thousands) of rules and regulations, would certainly seem more difficult than trusting Jesus. How can one even know every jot and tittle of the Law… let alone keep it? It’s difficult to comprehend. Trusting Jesus for grace-gifted righteousness is surely easy in comparison. I thought so, at least… and as a Sunday School teacher, surely I was right (sarcasm, in case it wasn’t obvious!).

Not so. Several in my class didn’t like the question… they didn’t think it was easier to trust Jesus. Nor do I, now that I think about it.

What’s easier, following a command to do or not do something, or trusting someone to help you fulfill such an obligation? Pick the sin you struggle with most and insert that. What’s easier… not doing that particular sin, or trusting someone to help you avoid that sin?

The point? One’s impersonal… the other is HIGHLY personal.

The simple fact is that trusting other people is not always easy. Most of us, even with those closest to us, have limits with our trust. We have things we can’t share with them… we have situations we just can’t allow them to help us with. We’re terrified… scared that we’ll be hurt by them… worried they’ll reject us… concerned they won’t keep our struggles in confidence. We have thousands of reasons… and that’s with people we’ve lived with… people we’ve known personally our entire lives.

So trusting Jesus should be easy? Hardly… it can be one of the most difficult things in this world to do.

Think about your situation prior to salvation. None of us living today had seen Jesus. None of us had spoken with Him one on one. What we knew of Him, we had primarily learned either through writings nearly 2,000 years old, or through things others have told us about Him. And get this… we’re supposed to stop trying to do what’s right, but simply have faith in Him and trust Him to provide righteousness?

Not an easy proposition. As a matter of fact, it sounds preposterous… ludicrous… insane. Even the Bible seems to note this:

1 Corinthians 1:18
18For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Yeah… it sounds nuts, but that’s the message of the gospel. Trust Jesus and be saved. Not an easy thing to do… especially to take that first step of faith.

Obviously, certain steps of faith in trusting Jesus get easier after that… but not all. We learn experientially that Christ won’t let us down… that, as Romans 10:11 says, we “who trust in Him will never be put to shame.” But there will ALWAYS be decisions of faith… opportunities to trust Jesus. Many of these won’t be easy.

What do you do when Christ lays missions on your heart, and you know you’re supposed to pick up and go? What do you do when He prompts you to go next door to witness to your neighbor? What do you do when He asks you whether you love Him or (blank) more, and asks you to give (blank) up? What do you do if you’re faced with the ultimate test of your trust, as the persecuted church faces… deny Him to live, or claim Him and die?

No. Trusting Jesus with these decisions is most certainly NOT easy.

It’s just worth it.


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John Written by:

Husband, Daddy, Christ-follower, sports fan... pressing on toward the goal for which God has called me heavenward in Christ. #ForeverRoyal!

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  1. September 19, 2006
    Reply

    Amen.

    I harp at my class all the time that the “church” has done a lousy job of conveying .. impressing .. convincing .. the people of the surpassing value of leading a sold-out Christian life. Of doing the right thing all the time, every time. Of always loving. Always obeying.

    Most people, it seems to me, think of Christianity as the perfect “add-on” or “completer” for our lives. Jesus’ chat with Nicodemus convinced me it’s the other way around. We’re to fit into HIS life, not Him into OURS.

  2. September 20, 2006
    Reply

    I was leafing through the blogs to see if there were any new postings and a thought actually invaded my brain as I logged into and out of Toward-the-Goal.

    It’s easy to trust Jesus, when you have exhausted all other avenues. After you’ve done everything humanly possible … done all the research … seen all the doctors … made all the appeals. When you run out of gas, where else you got to go?

    There’s even a cute adage (I’m tellin ya I got a million of’em) about that. “When you have nothing left but Jesus, you’ll find He was all you needed in the first place”. Or maybe “When you’re down to nothing, God is up to something”.

    What’s hard is to dump it off at the altar and leave it there when that’s the first thing you do. I know I was attacked by a man in the church who stated I was a “Prideful arrogant man who just like to hear himself talk a lot” after he’d heard me teach a course. I was about to go down the list of points he’d raised when God plainly said “I will fight for you while you keep silent”.

    Same message He laid on Moses when his front was the Red Sea and his back was Pharaoh’s thundering herd. But God delivered Moses and the Israelis, and he did the same for me.

  3. September 20, 2006
    Reply

    Bob, there is a greal deal of projection in those who have to criticise. What they don’t see is that they are just using your face as their mirror. I like that bit – I was about to go down the list of points he’d raised when God plainly said “I will fight for you while you keep silent.” Good one!

  4. September 22, 2006
    Reply

    Trusting is counterintuitive to our nature and our culture. We are taught from day one to take care of ourselves and that no one can do better than ol’ Number One. We also know that we are inherently untrustworthy, so how in the world could we trust anyone else more than ourselves??? So, we more often than not just John Wayne our way through life. Ugh, it is so frustrating. Perhaps that is why God gave us Paul’s anguish in Romans 7!!!

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