Why “Being Good” Can’t Be Good Enough

“All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one” (Romans 10:12)

I imagine all of us at some point have wished that “being good” was good enough to spend eternity with God. There are people we love that one day leave this world making us wonder if they ever put their trust in Jesus Christ. And even with the best of intentions, we wish God would grant salvation based on their “goodness”. The problem in wishing that is it’s not what the Bible teaches. To think otherwise is to misunderstand the relationship between the Old and New Testaments, to ignore numerous passages of Scripture and to read others out of context. Our beliefs must conform to God’s inerrant Word.

The Bible teaches that we’re saved by faith alone in Christ alone. That is the distinguishing characteristic between Christianity and all other religions. The Bible says that “none is righteous, no, not one” that “no one seeks God” and that “no one does good, not even one” (Romans 3:10-12). And about our righteous deeds it says, they’re like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). God really is that holy and we all fall short of the perfect standard He set, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). But thankfully, God didn’t leave us in that condition. By His grace, He has provided a way of salvation for us in Christ. Our stains have been washed clean by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13). Jesus willingly traded His righteousness for our sin (2 Corinthians 5:21) and by His wounds we have been healed (1 Peter 2:24). This is the message we share. This is the good news. This is the gospel. Let these truths never be lost. Though perhaps we might sometimes wish salvation rested on our goodness, the Bible clearly teaches it doesn’t. Salvation results from one thing—trusting in the finished work of Christ, because, unlike us, He was good enough!

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