How does a person get “right with God” – is it by keeping a list of rules?
The New Testament clearly teaches that keeping a list of rules – even if they are “religious rules” (the “Law”) – will never make us “right with God!” (The theological term for being “right with God is “justified”)! All the rules do is reveal our sinfulness and need of a Savior!”
Here’s how Apostle Paul put it in Galatians 3:21-24…
“We know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified!” (Galatians 2:16)
“If a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law. But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe… The law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith” (Galatians 3:21-24)
Being right with God does come by human effort – “outside > in.” It rather comes “inside > out” – We acknowledge our sin (confession), ask for God’s forgiveness, put our trust in Christ to “save” and transform us… and He declares us righteous, transforms us, and begins working His righteousness within us – “inside > out!
I’m so glad that I did that! Let me tell you, it’s great to be “right with God” – Justified – righteous in God’s eyes!!!