Salvation fascinates me. It should because it is what angels long to look into (1 Peter 1:12). I’ve heard several powerful testimonies in the last few days that have really charged my batteries. Of course, Jesus is the author of our salvation (Hebrews 5:9) having fulfilled the law perfectly. The law serves several purposes, one being “so that every mouth may be stopped.” (Romans 3:19)
Our mouths are a major roadblock to salvation. We justify ourselves by building ourselves up or making excuses for our behavior. However, Jesus make it crystal clear that he did not come to save those who are well, but rather the sick. “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” (Mark 2:17)
Under the Law
Those who have not been born again are still under the law. They are not under grace because that is only for those who are saved. Therefore, the hurdle is very high for those outside of grace. As James writes, “For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.” (James 2:10)
This is a big problem. Paul explains, “Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God.” (Romans 3:19) The law shows just how sinful we are. It’s meant to shut us down and know that the day will come when we will be held accountable fully for our actions (Hebrews 9:27).
More and more, I am coming to understand that we use the Sinner’s Prayer as a way to shortcut past this difficult part – the brokenness that can only come from repentance. Repentance happens only when our mouths are stopped.
Testimonies reveal this. People may want to lead a different life, but nothing changes until there is a hard stop. That’s the point in which the law hits them hard and they realize their hopeless situation: they are sinful beings. That’s the point when the gospel comes in. Jesus came to seek and save the lost.
Spending time telling people all the benefits of Jesus is of little value without the knowledge of sin. That’s why there are so many false converts who quickly agree to recite the Sinner’s Prayer. Why wouldn’t they? But until they know their true condition, they will be unwilling to actually follow Jesus. “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” (Matthew 8:20)
Unless we know what our true condition is, why would we want to follow him? He commands us to leave it all for his sake (Matthew 19:29). We’re to deny ourselves and pick up our cross and follow him (Matthew 16:24). The folks who lived during this time knew exactly what that meant. They saw the dead and dying who hung on the crosses. Who would want that?
So That Every Mouth May Be Stopped.
The law is the catalyst that stops the mouth so that the gospel might be received. There is really no point trying to convince a mind of the reasonableness of the gospel when his mouth won’t quit making excuses for his behavior. Yes, talk about the gospel, but first stop his mouth with the law. If his mouth won’t stop, he’s not ready for the gospel. Move on with your seed to other soil.
Ray Comfort of Living Waters is a wonderful teacher of street evangelism. He has countless videos that demonstrate this principle that I’m sure you will find quite fascinating. Check it out. It just may change the way you look at things. Who knows, you may become a powerful evangelist! Does that idea frighten you? It should, because God can raise up the lowliest to do his work, including you.
It also should excite you. Who, honestly, won’t want to do what God wants us to do? I’ll tell you who. Those who have not fully appreciated all that God has done for them. If the idea of sharing the gospel frightens you or you are ashamed of it, let me suggest that you get back to the basics. Examine yourself against the law and see how you stack up. Then, examine what Jesus has done for you. This should humble you and fill you with great joy! You should then be willing to do the will of Him who created and saved you. Scared? Probably. Willing? Certainly.
Realize, of course, that you may find that you may NOT be saved. Then this exercise will be all the more important for you. Today may be the day of your salvation! Use the law, “so that every mouth may be stopped” – including yours!
Father, I pray that this post may encourage readers to examine their lives. May they abandon things of this world and follow you faithfully. And, may those who don’t believe be convicted to their very core and turn to Jesus. “For all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” You are faithful and true! Amen.
Copyright © 2021 Scott Powers