“The message is as near as your mouth or your heart.” And this is the same message we preach about faith. So you will be saved, if you honestly say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and if you believe with all your heart that God raised him from death. 10 God will accept you and save you, if you truly believe this and tell it to others.”
11 The Scriptures say that no one who has faith will be disappointed, 12 “No matter if that person is a Jew or a Gentile. There is only one Lord, and he is generous to everyone who asks for his help. 13 All who call out to the Lord will be saved.”
In this second reading of this weeks scripture lessons, we find a wonderful promise to every person. This is a promise handed down by our creator to His creation.
During the season of Lent we often talk about “putting off” or denying ourselves of something that has been pleasurable to us. To be sure, we must put off sin and the Lord knows that is a daily action for all of us.
While at lunch last Sunday I overheard a lady say, “Well, how about taking something on during Lent? We talk about removing something during Lent.” This passage is one of those actions of ‘putting on’ something that is eternal. The salvation which our Lord provides.
I have talked with many people over the years and they have the mindset that coming to the Lord is a difficult process. The passage from Romans helps us understand that coming to the Lord is a very simple process of accepting His love.
Several years ago I was in Hollywood, Calif.. While walking on Hollywood Boulevard one Friday night, I observed a lot of strange sights. I also saw the Hare Krishna’s and others doing their forms of evangelism for their cause.
There was an Evangelical group who had a van set up with a portable platform and they were singing and giving messages of hope to people. During a break one of the men came by and introduced himself to me and I explained that I was an associate minister at one of the churches. He invited me to “witness” to the people when they started the next segment of their street service.
I had never done anything quite like that in my life, but I thought, “why not?” So, I began to give a talk about my experience with the Lord and at the end of my talk I invited anyone who had any problem in their life to ask God for help.
One very tall gentleman had been listening to me and he walked up to me and asked, “Do you believe what you have just said?”
“Yes, sir, I do,” I responded. Tears began to flow down the cheeks of this giant of a man and he shared with me a bit of what he was experiencing with a broken relationship.
Right there, on a Friday night in 1972, at the corner of Hollywood and Vine, this giant of a man humbled himself to receive Jesus Christ into his life and he simply believed as we have read in today’s scripture.
During Lent as we have considered what we are giving up, let us also share with others what they can “put on.” Put on Christ! He loves you. He really does.
You can hear all sorts of things that you must do in order to be saved depending on which church you go into. Bottom line, follow the scripture. Think about it and ask the Lord for clear direction.
If you struggle with whom to talk to, my contact information is at the end of this column. I will be glad to help you work through the process of knowing Jesus.
The Most Rev. Michael Layne, PhD, ThD, is a Bishop in the Lutheran Orthodox Church and can be reached at 812-614-2160 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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