Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen and yet have believed. And many other signs truly Jesus did in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name. (John 20: 29-31 KJV)

Applying intellectual reasoning, regardless of how well-researched it is, will never provide a satisfying explanation to the questions posed in the quest for salvation. There will always be a lingering hunger if the heart fails to make the connection to Christ on a personal level. This may or may not be an emotional, tearful, fall on the knees before the altar experience. It may well take the more subtle form of a soft flutter like angel wings in the seat of our most private feelings. But at the very least it should be an awakening to Christ’s presence and influence. 

There is more to salvation than simple belief. While all we have to do to receive God’s forgiveness is to ask for it, it carries with it the caveat of showing good faith by turning from our fallen ways. To simply go our merry way and return to life as usual after a profession of faith in Christ is an insincere, counterfeit profession which Christ can see right through and sheer folly. We cannot pull one over on the omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient God. As the writer of Hebrews describes with such precision:

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12).

God may not expect us to be perfect as Christ was, but He does expect us to put in the effort to aspire to be.

While we will always long for the kind of tangible manifestations the early Christians enjoyed with an earthly Jesus, He did not leave us to operate in a vacuum. In his stead He petitioned the Father to send the Comforter, the Holy Spirit to dwell in us. 

So we should soldier on and take heart that we are every bit as precious in Christ’s eyes as those first believers. (John 14: 16-18 KJV) 

Dear Lord, Please help us to recognize that there is more to salvation than an intellectual approach can provide. Amen.

Carol (NC)