Pastor Chuck Smith
Shall we turn to Romans, chapter fourteen. Walking in Christian love, would be the theme of this chapter if I would put a theme in it. And it begins with not judging one another.
So Paul said, Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to disputes over doubtful things. It is amazing how that we have allowed petty differences to divide the body of Jesus Christ. Have you ever known anyone who has won an argument? It’s tragic that there are so many people who want to argue over non-essential things. There was a big debate at one time of how many angels could dance on the head of a pin? People got angry with each other because of the differences of opinion. Shall we baptize people forwards or backwards, or shall we sprinkle them? Or shall we dunk them three times? And denominations have been created over such differences.
Don’t get involved, Paul said in disputes over doubtful things, especially with one who is weak in the faith. And Paul brings up some of these disputes that existed in the church at that time. 2For one believes he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats only vegetables. That is, weak in the faith. There are some people today who feel convicted about eating meat. They are vegetarians. Paul, writing to Timothy, said in the last days there would arise people who would forbid to marry and command you to abstain from meat which God had created to be received with thanksgiving of them that believe and know the truth.
It’s nothing to argue over but the proper attitude that we are to have over these differences is, 3Let not him who eats despise him who does not eat, and let not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for God has received him. In other words, we are not to look down and say, oh, that crazy guy doesn’t meat. Can you believe that, you know? In other words to sort of look down on those who feel those convictions? But on the other side of the coin, those who have those convictions should not be judging those who eat meat. You know, I find it rather easy not to look down on those that have those strange convictions, but what I have difficulty with is not judging someone who has greater liberty than I do. If someone is doing something that I personally have convictions over, I’m prone to say, how can they do that? How can they say they are Christians? Look what they are doing. And so you see, you turn the coin around and it’s a little different. But the key is, of course as we get to it is to walk in love. Yes, there can be differences of convictions.
I was talking to a minister from another church one time. He asked me if I went to the beach. He should have been able to tell by the tan that I had. I said, oh yes, I love surfing. I go down a couple of times a week to Huntington and surf. He said, oh, I wish I could do that. But the church that I pastor, they really believe it’s a sin to go to the beach. Oh, I would love to do that. I felt sorry for the poor fellow because of the convictions of others that were limiting him from a wonderful sport of surfing. And yet there are people whose convictions about going to the beach are legitimate. He was talking about, what all of those scantily clad women on the beach? I said, what women? I don’t go on the beach to ogle the girls. I go on the beach to surf. I don’t hang around on the beach. I don’t care for the beach itself. I love being out in the surf. But, you see, if a person is having problems with lust, then it is probably best that he has convictions about going to the beach. And so you see, not all of us are made up the same. So it’s possible for one person to have honest convictions over an issue and another person not to have those same convictions. So we’re not to despise those that have the convictions. But in the same token, they are not to judge us who may not have the same convictions that they have.
For Paul said, 4Who are you to judge another's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Let us say that you are very wealthy, that you have many servants in your home, that you invite guests for dinner. The servants are there waiting on them. And if one of your guests would start to rebuke one of your servants, whom you feel is doing a marvelous job. He’s is doing exactly what you told him to do. He is waiting the table just as you have instructed him. But this person begins to get on his case. He says, why did you put my fork over here? And you begin to judge. You say, wait a minute. I told him to do that. He’s not your servant. He’s my servant. I’ll take care of him, if I feel he is wrong. And yet here we are judging one another but you see, we are all servants of Jesus Christ. And so who am I to judge the way you serve the Lord. What I need to be interested in is how I serve the Lord. That I serve the Lord in a manner that is pleasing to Him. That I do what He has commanded me to do. That I am looking to Him for my instructions and directions. And yet, it doesn’t really work that way all the time, does it? People are judging how a person serves God, what a person believes, and things of this nature. There is so much of this going on in the church that it is tragic. Who are you to judge another’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls.
Then I like what Paul adds here, Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand. You know I have discovered that. There were some people that I thought would never stand. And God made them, upheld them and helped them to stand. And so this business of judging another for meat.
Then he goes on to another issue. What day should we worship God? In the early church there were varying opinions. You see so many of the early Christians were Jews. And they brought their Jewish traditions and Jewish law into the church. They still were Kosher. Peter was Kosher. When the Lord there in Joppa, let down the sheet before Peter, and he saw all of these manner of beasts and creeping things. And the Lord said, “Rise Peter, kill and eat.” He said, not so Lord, I’ve never eaten anything that is unclean. I’m a Kosher boy. I’ve always kept Kosher. And so there was this division that developed in the early church because the Gentiles for the most part believed that they should worship the Lord on the day that Jesus was resurrected from the dead. And some of your early church fathers even wrote treatises on why Sunday should be the day for worship. And this is long before Constantine. I know that the Jehovah Witnesses and all try and say that Constantine was the one that entered into Sunday worship. No, no, no, if they knew their church history, they would know that the early church fathers had discussed this among themselves. Justin Martyr and Tertullian and all, they all dealt with this long before Constantine ever came along, which day we should worship. Many of them had come to the conclusion that Sunday, the first day of the week, was the day of new beginnings. We have a new beginning. We have a new life in Christ. Let us worship on Sunday. So that created a controversy in the early church, which would be the proper day to worship the Lord?
So 5One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. But then you have this character that esteems every day alike, Me! I mean I think that every day is the Lord’s day. I give every day to the Lord. When I wake up in the morning, I say, well good morning, Lord! What would You have me to do today? My life is Yours. My time is Yours. I give myself to You. Guide me today, Lord. I wish to do the things that You desire for me to do. I’m Yours to command. And I begin the day that way. Every day to me is the Lord’ day. So, this issue of what day, is irrelevant to me because it is every day for me. But there are some people that are really hung up on days. You have the Seventh Day Adventists. You have the Jehovah Witnesses and Seventh Day Baptists and those that really adhere still to the Sabbath Day. They are very strict about when we should worship and even accuse those who worship on Sunday, as worshipping the mark of the beast, which they say is Sunday worship. And actually Sunday is the day that was set for the Sun god. So my, you know, you are worshipping on Sunday. Well Saturday was named after the Saturn and the god, Saturn. So what do you have, you know? So not an issue to divide over. One man esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike.
Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. I mean it’s a matter of how God has dealt with you, individually.
6He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord(the Lord’s Day); and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it. (In other words, it’s not a conviction on his part.)
He who eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks; and he who does not eat, to the Lord he does not eat, and gives God thanks. This is, he feels, that this is the way the Lord would have me. He wouldn’t have to eat that, so I won’t eat that. And so it’s to the Lord that he follows that conviction. And he gives God thanks. The key is that we all give God thanks. I give God thanks that I can eat a steak. And they thank God that they are delivered from meat. You know, they don’t have to eat meat. They think they are delivered. You know to tell you the truth, I really believe that Paul has an occasional pork chop. He had great liberty.
7For none of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself. We are not to be living for ourselves, but we are to be living for Jesus Christ. Paul says for me to live is Christ!
8For if we live, we live to the Lord; (We do it as unto the Lord! If I have convictions on a certain issue, my convictions are unto the Lord. I keep those convictions as unto the Lord, as obedience to the Lord.) and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's. For before his own master, he either stands or falls. We belong to the Lord. We each one follow Him, obedient to Him because He is Lord!
9For to this end Christ died and rose and lived again, that He might be Lord of both the dead and the living. 10But why do you judge your brother? Or why do you show contempt for your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Before his own master, he either stands or falls. We shouldn’t be judging one another. We are told in the Scriptures that we should judge ourselves. Therefore let a man examine himself for if we will judge ourselves, we will not be judged of God. To tell you the truth, I have a big enough problem taking care of my self that I really don’t time to take care of you. You don’t have to answer to me. I’m not your Lord. One day you will answer to Him. One day I will answer to Him. Before his own master he either stands or falls. I want to teach people their responsibility of standing before God. Not to lean upon me, but to learn to stand before God, knowing that their ultimate responsibility isn’t going to be to me. You are not going to have to answer to me for what you do or don’t do. But one day you will answer to God. And if I can teach people that responsibility to God, then it’s a lot easier task for me than having to feel responsible for everybody and what they are doing. It’s better to just teach you that one day you are going to give an account of yourself before God. We shall all stand before the judgment seat of God.
Now there are two judgments that are coming, well, there probably are three if you want to get technical. But you know, that’s where you get into theological arguments. There is a judgment, of course of the nations when Christ returns. (Matthew 25). There is the judgment of the believer. In 2 Corinthians, chapter five, Paul tells us that we will all stand before the judgment seat of Christ to receive the rewards for the things that we have done while in our bodies, whether good or bad. And knowing therefore the fear of the Lord, we seek to persuade men. Now the judgment of the believers is different from what is commonly called the great white throne judgment of God, which is found in Revelation chapter 20. This is the judgment of the unbelievers. This happens at the end of the thousand year reign of Jesus Christ when the dead, small and great, stand before God and the Books are opened and they are judged out of the things that are written in the books. The believer will not be standing at that judgment bar because Jesus has stood there for us. He bore the judgment for our sins. And thus we do not stand before God to be judged for our sins because through Jesus Christ our sins have been erased! But we will stand before Jesus Christ and His judgment seat. In the Greek, it is known as the bema seat or the reward seat. The bema seat comes from the Greek Olympics. They had the judges’ seat, the bema. And when you had run a race, if you won that race, you would come before the judges’ seat. They would place on your head a laurel wreath, signifying your accomplishment. This is the reward for all of that training and effort and for winning the race. So we stand before the bema seat of Christ to receive the rewards for the things that we have done in our bodies. We are told that our works will be judged as to what sort they are. Yes, you did a lot of wonderful things, but why did you do them? What was in your heart? What was the motivation behind those works? And that’s going to be an important issue in that day. That is why Jesus said, take heed to yourself that you don’t do your righteousness before men to be seen of men because I say unto you, you have your reward. If you do your righteous deeds in such a way as to draw a lot of attention and a lot of glory to yourself, if that’s your motivation, I want people to respect me. I want people to think highly of me. I want people to know how wonderful I am. So I do things with a lot of flair. So, I draw a lot of attention to myself. Jesus sort of over illustrated, He said, when you give, don’t hire a band to go before you and toss your money in the plate, you know. And sort of overemphasizing, but that’s the idea, drawing attention to yourself. Here he comes, “da da tut de da.” I see it in this business of telethons. How many will give a thousand? Raise your checks, you know. Oh, wonderful! And they clap. And you get to heaven, you say Lord, where is my reward? What reward? Don’t you remember? I stood up and everybody knows, I gave my thousand dollars. I waved my check, everybody knows that. Yes, that was your reward, everybody knows how generous you were. Jesus said, when you give don’t let your right hand know what your left hand does. Give out of your heart. Let every man, as he has purposed in his own heart, so give. God loves a cheerful giver. Now that means if you give grudgingly, I don’t think you are going to get any reward. You know, where, oh no, I’ve got to give again. They always pass the plate. That’s all they want is money you know. But this guy who is sitting next to me, I don’t what him to think I’m a skinflint. I’d rather put in a quarter, but I’ll put in a five you know. Ugh. There goes my lunch money this week. Keep it, you might as well because you aren’t going to get a reward for that anyhow, if that’s your attitude in giving. God loves a cheerful giver. So we will stand before the judgment seat of Christ and we will receive the things done in our bodies, whether good or bad. The works will be tried by fire. Many of the works will burn like wood, hay and stubble. There was no true substance to them. Those that survived the fire, those we will be rewarded for. This is where Jesus will say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in the little things, now I will make you ruler over many, enter into the joy of the Lord!”
The servant, you remember, that hid that which was entrusted to him. He put it in a napkin and buried it. When the Lord returned, he brought it back, Lord, I know you are an austere man, you reap where you don’t sow. He said you have judged yourself. So we stand before the judgement seat of Christ. The sinners will stand before the judgment seat of God, Revelation chapter 20. The books will be opened and whoever’s name is not found written in the Book of Life will be cast into the lake that is burning with fire. This is the second death, a whole different issue. But we will all, Paul declares here, stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Therefore, we are not to judge one another. We stand before a higher court. We will stand before Jesus Christ. He in righteousness will judge us and reward us accordingly.
11For it is written:
"As I live, says the Lord, Every knee shall bow to Me, And every tongue shall confess to God." Paul is quoting here from Isaiah chapter forty-five, where God declares, I have sworn by Myself. The Word has gone out of my mouth and shall not return. Every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess. Paul quotes this again in his letter to the Philippians as he talks about Christ having emptied Himself of the divine glory, majesty and deity. Being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God or something to be grasped, to be equal with God, but He emptied Himself, the kenosis (the Greek word for empty is kenoo), He poured Himself out. As a servant, He came in the likeness of men, obedient even to death on the cross, wherefore God also has highly exalted Him, giving Him a name, which is above every name. That at the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.
Now, God said I have sworn by Myself. The Book of Hebrews tells us that because God can’t swear by any higher. When an oath is taken, it’s always taken by something higher. Because God, when He wants to confirm by an oath, there is nothing higher to swear by, so He swears by Himself. But whenever God takes an oath to confirm the truth of what He is saying, you can be sure of this truth more than you can be sure of your own name! When God takes an oath to confirm a fact, you can put it down as nothing is more certain in all of the universe. This will surely happen. What? That every knee shall bow, that every tongue shall confess. Confess what? That Jesus Christ is Lord. We are talking about mastery, about lordship. That Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father!
12So then each of us shall give account of himself to God. 13Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother's way. Now rather than judging, it’s important that we watch ourselves, that we not be a stumbling block to a weaker brother, that we not so flaunt our liberty in Christ that it causes a weaker brother to stumble because I have freedom to do certain things.
Paul said, 14I know and am convinced by the Lord Jesus that there is nothing unclean of itself; but to him who considers anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean. Now Jesus said that it’s not what goes into a man’s mouth that defiles a man, but what comes out of His mouth. What goes into his mouth, passes through his body. That’s not what defiles him. It’s what comes out of a man that defiles a man. For out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. So Paul, this is an extremely broad statement, I know that there is nothing unclean of itself, but if you esteem it to be unclean, it is unclean. Now I esteem cigarettes as unclean. They make your clothes smell, your draperies. They stain your teeth, your fingers and your fingernails. I esteem them to be unclean. I could not smoke a cigarette without feeling guilty. Now that doesn’t mean that another person can’t smoke. It always sort of shocks me. Well, it shocked me tremendously, when I discovered that Spurgeon smoked cigars. Spurgeon, my man Spurgeon! And G. Campbell Morgan smoked a pipe. I can’t believe it. Now, if you have convictions on a certain thing, then it’s important that you are true to your convictions. Paul said, it’s the conscience that we need to be concerned about. You don’t want to do things that make you feel guilty. Nothing is unclean of itself. Now he, of course, is talking about meat, the unclean meat under the law. That is why, I think that he ate pork chops. Nothing is unclean of itself. But to him who considers any thing to be unclean, to him it is unclean.
Now of the hang-ups they had in the early church, was that so many times when you bought meat in the butcher shop, it was meat that had first of all been offered to idols. And there were people that had strong convictions about eating meat that had first offered to an idol. And so when they would go to the butcher shop and they would see a cut of meat, they would say, was that offered to an idol? Well, yes, this morning at the sacrifices, “No way!” So Paul said when you buy your meat, don’t ask. And then he said eat what is set before you, asking no questions. And that is just exactly what he is talking about. When you are invited over to a friend’s house for dinner and they are serving prime rib, don’t ask, was this beef offered to an idol? Just eat what is set before you, asking no questions. Don’t’ ask, just eat it, enjoy it. Because the meat itself is not hurting you, unless you know that it was, and then conscience says, oh, my, this meat was offered to an idol. I shouldn’t eat this, you know. And then you feel all of the conviction. And then you go around feeling this heavy conviction, I ate meat offered to an idol.
So nothing is unclean of itself, but to him who considers or esteems it to be unclean, so because I esteem cigarette smoking to be unclean, to me it would be unclean. But I can’t pass that conviction on to you. I can try. But if you smoke, I shouldn’t be judging you nor should I think I’m more spiritual than you are because I don’t smoke, and he smokes. I used to feel that. But God has brought me a long way.
Nothing is unclean of itself but if a person esteems it to be unclean, to him it is unclean. 15Yet if your brother is grieved because of your food, you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your food the one for whom Christ died. The issue of Christmas trees and their pagan origin, there are some people who have very deep convictions against having a Christmas tree in their house. They’ve read Hyslop’s “To Babylon” and other articles that deal with the pagan origins of the Christmas tree and the lights and so forth, so they have strong convictions about having Christmas trees. Now to me, I like the smell of a pine tree at Christmas time. It gives a great scent in the house. I think a decorated tree is beautiful. However, because there are those within our congregation that have those convictions, I don’t have a Christmas tree at home. Not that I feel that it is sinful or wrong, but I just want to walk in love. I don’t want my liberty or my freedom to offend someone who has strong convictions on this matter. So it’s not that big a deal. We can put a few pine branches around and still get the smell. But I don’t want to offend someone because of my liberties that I feel in Christ. In reality in walking in love, there are many things that I have a liberty to do that I don’t do because I don’t want to stumble someone who has a sensitive conscience toward certain things. It’s not that I feel they are wrong, it’s just that why should I stumble them? And so I sort of follow the exhortation of Paul, here in Romans chapter fourteen, the walking in love towards the weaker brother.
16Therefore do not let your good be spoken of as evil; 17for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18For he who serves Christ in these things is acceptable to God and approved by men. Those are not the real issues. The real issues of the kingdom of God are righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. That’s what it is all about. It’s not about whether or not I eat meat or I’m a vegetarian. The kingdom of God is righteousness. It’s peace. It’s joy.
But it’s interesting and it’s rather tragic that so many people within the body of Christ want to so overemphasize the differences of belief, that they are ready to fight. They used to call them the fighting “fundies”, the fundamentalists. Boy they will fight over anything that disagrees with their position, thier belief. We’ve got some here in the county. This business of “cure”. Oh, how they love to fight. The kingdom of God isn’t fighting. It isn’t emphasizing the differences that we might take concerning reformation theology. The kingdom of God is righteousness. It’s peace and it is joy in the Holy Spirit. And I feel really sorry for these people who feel that they’ve got the corner on the truth and if you don’t believe the way we believe, brother, you know. God, help those poor guys. Their position on the five points of Calvinism, taking them to extreme, gives no place for evangelism, because if a person isn’t elected to be saved, all of the persuasion of the Scriptures in the world aren’t going to bring him to a faith in Jesus Christ. And there is no choice. The fact is they showed up at Greg’s campaign in Sacramento with teeshirts that had a word, “Choice” in a circle and then a cross through it, no choice. And they were telling the people, coming to an evangelistic service, you have no right being here. You can’t choose to accept Jesus. He’s wrong in telling you to come forward to accept Jesus, because unless you are elected you can’t come. And carrying that to an extreme. So because you can’t convert a sinner, what you try and do, is convert the Christian to your weird position. There’s no one else to convert, you feel like you have to convert someone. You can’t convert them to be saved, so convert them to belief in the tulip, the five points of Calvinism. Sad! And thus they are constantly attacking. Attacking. Attacking. They are attack sheep. Jesus said you’re sheep. They are the attack sheep. They are snarling. Sic em! Can you imagine a sheep, snarling and attacking? Oh help us. The kingdom of God is not meat or drink. It’s not the differences. It’s righteousness. It’s peace. It’s joy. It’s walking in love.
19Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another. Let us follow after the things that make for peace and the things whereby we may build up one another, not tear down one another. Let’s follow the things where we can build up one another. Encourage one another. Strengthen one another.
I think it’s such a tremendous example that the Salvation Army is here with us tonight, sharing in their talent and in their music that God has given them. That we can all enjoy together, their presence with us, realizing that we are all one in Christ, that we are all members of His body, that we can share this way with the body of Christ. I think this is a tremendous example of what Paul is saying here. Rather than having divisions or trying to emphasize positions, just walking in love with each other, realizing that Jesus Christ is Lord! He is the Lord of our lives. We live to please Him. One day we will stand before Him and to give an account of ourselves and those things which He has called us to do, our faithfulness and obedience to the things to which He has called us. So follow after those things that build up.
20Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All things indeed are pure, but it is evil for the man who eats with offense. If you eat and you feel guilty, then it is wrong to do.
21It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak. Don’t lay a stumbling block before him. It’s good not to do those things if you know that he has a conscience against it.
22Do you have faith? It doesn’t bother me. I can eat meat or I can do this, you know. It doesn’t bother me.
Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God.
Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. Oh, what a powerful passage that is! Happy is the man who lives without a conscience that is constantly pounding him, who is not condemning himself in the things, which he allows.
23But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin. So Paul gives us the law of love. Later on he will say, I will not eat meat as long as the earth stands, if it will cause my weaker brother to stumble. That is he won’t eat it in front of them. You have faith, liberty? Have it at home. Go ahead and eat your steaks.
It’s interesting, we have friend who are Jews, who try to follow the Kosher laws. It’s a difficult thing to take them out to eat because they try to keep the Kosher laws. So they’ll never order meat. They’ll order salads. And then there are several Kosher things they have to watch for even with salads. Now they are Jews. They know that I have liberty in Christ. I’m not worried about offending them, so I order steak or whatever. And I enjoy it. I feel no convictions. I eat my steak. They eat their dry salads. And I enjoy a glass of milk with my dinner, but they can’t have milk even with turkey. Even under the law it says that you’re not to see the goat in its mother’s milk. That is, you are not to boil the meat in milk of a baby goat. Don’t boil it in its mother’s milk. That was the law says. But they get so tight in the interpretation of this, is that they figure if you eat meat and drink milk at the same meal, you don’t know but what the milk that you drank may have come from the mother of the animal whose meat you are eating. And they will get mixed in your stomach. And sort of seething there in your stomach. So you are seething the meat in the mother’s milk. To make sure that you don’t do that, they never have dairy products, even cheese, the cheese might have been made from the milk that came from the goat, whose little kid you are eating. And so they are very strict about no dairy products with meat products. In fact, we were in Jerusalem one day and were almost involved in a riot because this old man was in a Kosher restaurant and he pulled out a cheese sandwich. Oh, the place just exploded! But the thing that I don’t quite understand is that they won’t even eat turkey with cheese products. Now I didn’t know that turkeys gave milk.
The little things that divide us. But oh the cure and the answer always is, walk in love. You’ll never go wrong. If we walk in love, we know we’re right. God, help us to walk in love.
Father, we thank You for the instructions. Let us take them to heart, Lord. And let us be careful about the way we are prone to judge someone else, who seems to have a greater liberty than we have in certain actions. Lord, keep us from that tendency of sort of looking down on someone who has convictions about things that really don’t bother us at all. But Lord, if we know that our liberty might be hurting a weaker brother, give us the grace to walk in love before them so that they will not be stumbled because of our liberties. Lord, again, we recognize that You are our Lord and Master. And we want to live before You in a way that is pleasing to You. Before You we are either standing or falling but we thank You, Lord, that You’re able to help us to stand. And realizing that one day we will be standing before You and we will bow our knee and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Lord, we are glad that we bow our knees tonight and make that confession this evening. Lord, we pray for those who have not yet made that confession. We realize that one day they too will be forced to make that confession. Sooner or later it’s going to happen. You have sworn to that fact. The Word has gone out. It’s a settled issue. But Lord, we realize if they wait until later, when they are standing before Your great judgment throne, that the confession will not be to salvation in that day. So Lord, may we make that confession. May it be a true confession acknowledged by our lives. Our lives of service to You. Doing those things that please You. Help us. In Jesus' name. Amen.