Religion is Not a Title to Heaven
A man in the prime of life lay on his couch. Suddenly laid aside by sickness from an active business life and from a place of prominence in the church of which he was an esteemed member and office-bearer, he had leisure given to him to think. Never before, in the days of health and religious effort, had he considered his own personal condition in the sight of God, or where he would go when his earthly life was past.
One afternoon, a friend called to see him, and in the course of their conversation he said to the sick man, “I have more than once been at the very gate of death, and I cannot describe what peace I enjoyed at the prospect of meeting God, simply trusting in the precious blood of Jesus Christ as my only plea, my only title.”
The sick man raised himself on his elbow and said, “I have been thinking about the same matter a good deal of late. I feel I have not been sufficiently zealous in religion to enable me to say I can look into the future as you do. I would give all I possess if I could.”
“Religion is not a title to heaven,’’ replied the Christian visitor. “Religion never gave anybody peace with God, or a title to His presence. The blood of Jesus Christ alone can do that.”
The sick man seemed bewildered. He had been accustomed to think that religion was the very best thing in the world, and that when people spoke of “conversion,” “salvation,” and “cleansing in the blood of Christ,” they simply expressed in that way, and according to their own peculiar creed, the same thing as he called “religion.” His friend saw his perplexity, and said, “May I read you a short portion of the Scripture?” to which he received a glad consent. He then read in Exodus 12.
“And the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying,… Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel,… they shall take to them every man a lamb,… and… kill it…And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. …For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD. And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.” (Verses 1, 3, 6, 7, 12, 13).
Commenting briefly on the verses, he said, “It was the blood shed and sprinkled, the blood trusted, and it alone, that gave safety to all within the house that night. All under the shelter of the blood were safe, all outside it, no matter what their character, were doomed to judgment.’’
Sitting up, the sick man stretched forth his hand, and grasping the hand of his visitor, said slowly, with great emotion, “It’s all in the blood. I see clearly that my only title to salvation is in the blood of Christ.” How many think that religion is a saviour?
How many are trusting to their own righteousness and good works to take them, or to help them into heaven, whereas God declares that the precious blood of Christ, trusted in by the sinner, is his only shelter from coming wrath.
“The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.” I John 1:7 “Without shedding of blood is no remission.’’ Hebrews 9:22
O soul, for thee salvation thus
By God is freely given;
The blood of Christ atones for sin,
And makes us meet for Heaven.