Light the Backfire

Salvation is not setting aside the sin you love and doing the righteous or religious acts you despise believing that by doing so you are pleasing God. This just describes a filthy vile man bowing to a king he does not know or love. If God wanted this and made eternal life dependent on how well we pulled it off He would be nothing more than a despotic madman accomplishing mans certain destruction.
To believe you can stop sinning to become righteous is to believe imprisoning men makes them good. Man is simply capable of modifying their behavior. We can be deterred by negative feedback or harmful consequences but inside we would do it again if there were no consequences.
When Jesus spoke of salvation He spoke of transformation – a new man – born again – dead to flesh and alive in the Spirit. As Evangelist Paul Washer puts it - “Salvation is a supernatural act by where the sin you once loved you now despise and the righteousness you once despised you now desire.” Not that you become sinless but that your sin no longer brings pleasure but sends you running back into the arms of Christ Jesus. Not that you are suddenly willing to do religious acts but that you now find great pleasure in doing what God said – doing what pleases Him not out of duty but out of love.
The wrath of God to come is like a blazing inferno coming at you from all sides. Many in this area know what that is like from living through the wild fires of previous years. God’s wrath is going to come on mankind just like that one day, devouring sin until it is no more.
A backfire is one way of protecting yourself and those you love. We have a backfire against God’s wrath in Jesus Christ.
When Jesus died on the cross the very thing He wept over in the Garden of Gethsemane came down and crushed Him...the Wrath of the Father. Jesus took the wrath of sinners and was separated from the Father...the Trinity was broken for the only time in eternity.
“Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. But He was pierced through for out transgression, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed...But the Lord was pleased to crush Him, putting Him to grief if He would render Himself as a guilt offering.” Isaiah 53:4,5,6,10
Just as an offering was burned on the Jewish temple alter so Christ was consumed by the wrath of the Father on our behalf. Burned, a perfect-man offering: raised again on the third day, the Son of God, and seated at the right hand of the Father soon to judge those who will not believe.
LIGHT THE BACKFIRE!! surround yourself with Christ. Put on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6) which IS Christ Jesus. HIS righteousness; HIS truth; His Gospel; His Spirit; His Salvation – put it all on so that the fire of the wrath of God cannot consume you.
God’s people will not suffer His wrath, that is a promise. Not because you have quit sinning but because you know and love and confess HIM as Lord. Go on, light the fire! He is MIGHTY to save!