Saving faith is a commitment to Jesus as Savior and Lord

Published 8:24 am Wednesday, September 21, 2022

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: What does the Christian message mean to say that there is a cost to following Jesus? Didn’t Jesus pay the price? — C.F.

Dear C.F.: God has paid the greatest debt we will ever incur, and once we understand the incredible sacrifice He has made for us, we will be compelled to turn to Him in obedience and love. Many people want the benefits of their faith, but they hesitate at the cost of discipleship. To be a disciple of Jesus means to learn from Him, to follow Him. The cost may be high. A person must determine to leave sin behind, and some people are unwilling to do so. Living a disciplined life for Christ helps condition believers for a life of usefulness. Our minds must be set to do the will of the Lord, which is walking in obedience to God’s commands.
Jesus does not call us to a life of selfish comfort and ease — He calls us to a battle! He calls us to give up our own plans and to follow Him without reserve. Yes, it costs to follow Christ. But it also costs not to follow Christ. It cost the Apostle Paul the prestige of a high-level position in the Jewish nation. But he declared, “Whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ” (see Philippians 3:7-8).
Saving faith is a commitment to Jesus as Savior and Lord. It is a personal and individual decision. It is more than assent to historical or theological truth given to us in God’s Word. It is faith in the promises of God that all who trust in Christ will not perish but have eternal life. Jesus didn’t use gimmicks to gain followers. He laid out tough demands of discipleship — total commitment to His Word.
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(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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