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Hoodwinked by Satan
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The Devil has millions of people hoodwinked into the belief that they must save themselves. As some verbalize it here in the South, they’ve 'gotta get religion' before they can come to God. And my big question to this is, "Why wait?"

Why not just go to God right now! Rather than ostracize yourself from others, why not go to church where you can assemble with other sinners undergoing the same sanctification process you're going through, where you can hear the Word of God preached? Why not go to church, where God can do some working on your heart.

Church - A Hospital for Sinners
Avoiding church because you're not right with God is like needing to be hospitalized and yet waiting to go to the hospital until you are well! Churches, like hospitals, are there for sick people. We go to hospitals to get physical healing. We go to churches to get spiritual healing. Sometimes we get the idea that church is a haven for saints. In reality church is a hospital for sinners.

Refusing the Gift
Why is it that we refuse God's divine grace? Why do we refuse His garment of righteousness that He offers us freely, the one purchased at such an infinite price? How could we be so calloused and uncaring as to refuse such a heartfelt gesture from our heavenly King?

When Jesus displayed His passion for us at Calvary, His robe of perfection, His garment of light, His robe of righteousness, became our garment. At His death, His perfection, His light, His righteousness became ours.

Righteousness by Works
And now, here we are mired in misery, and trying to get right with the Lord. By our works, by our fruit and vegetable sacrifice, by our fig leaf righteousness, we desire to come clean. We think, "Isn't our sacrifice acceptable? Don't these fig leaves do the same job?"

The Gift Spurned, but Christ Still Offers Forgiveness
And so we go about our daily toil of 'getting right with God'. And all the while, Jesus is extending His righteousness in our direction and telling us, "Here, take it." And we hold up our hands and say, "Oh, no, Jesus, I couldn't do that."

"Oh, but I insist!" He urges.

"No, I couldn't do that," we continue to refuse.

"Here, just try it on," Christ insists.

"Nah, it costs too much. I couldn't afford it," we stall.

"That's okay, I already paid for it. Here, just try it on," Christ continues to hold the precious garment out for us.

"Nah, I can make it on my own," we insist.

But Jesus knows better, and so He still holds out His cloak of forgiveness and protection. All we have to be willing to do is to just put it on.

“See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes” (Zechariah 3:4).

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By Ron Reese. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW KING JAMES VERSION © 1982

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