“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 (sign) 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. And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.”Exodus 12:12-14
I remember playing flag football at summer camp. It really was the highlight of my summer and I loved playing more than anything. I did not care about basketball, softball or volleyball, but I wanted to perform and excel in our football game. One summer, I attended all three weeks of teen camp just to play. Those weeks of camp were pivotal to me in my spiritual life, but I must admit I went all three weeks that year primarily so that I could play football.
It was the second of week of camp and our team made it to the championship game. We did not have all the greatest players, but we were all clicking and playing at a high level. Our opponent was formidable and appeared to be comprised of cornfed teenagers from Nebraska. I was a little concerned, but I was eager to prove myself against this team. The game started off well and we were exchanging score for score. By the time we got to late in the third quarter, however, we did not match their scoring and they moved ahead and rolled us. We lost by three touchdowns that day, and I was physically and emotionally spent. It was one of the best games I had ever played, but it was not enough. I gave all that I had, but they were simply a better team. My heart was broken and I did everything I could to not break down in tears as I left the field as quickly as possible. A girl, who would later become my sister-in-law, told me we played a great game, but I was too choked up to even respond.
It is a horrible feeling to give everything you have only to realize it is not enough – when there is nothing more you can give, and yet you still fall short. Spiritually, it works the same way. We come short of God’s holy standard, even though we may think we are living an acceptable and a “good” life. I have been to church for most of my life, but one thing I know is that going to church does not make me a Christian. Doing good things does not make me good. My standard of good is not remotely close to God’s standard. Isaiah 64:6 states, “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.” What we we think is good, God sees as filthy rags.
Salvation only comes from God and is a gift of His mercy, not based on our righteousness. Romans 3:23 states, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” We can be the best person we know how to be, but we still come short of God’s holy standard. As told in the story recorded for us in our opening verses, the blood on the doorposts was the only thing that saved the children of Israel from destruction, and the blood – Jesus’ blood – is the only thing that can save us from destruction in hell. God delivered the Israelites only if they followed God’s offered way for salvation and it is the same for us. God’s only way offered for our salvation is for us to put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ and His precious blood as full payment for all of our sins. True forgiveness of sin that allows us to meet God’s holy standard is only found in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Just like the football game in which I gave my all yet still came short of the win, our all is not enough as we fall short of God’s glory.
Where are you today friend? Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior? Has His blood been applied to your sin account? Matthew 7:21-23 states, “Not every one that saith unto me, LORD, LORD, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, LORD, LORD, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” What will God say to you when your life is over? What an awful thing to think you were good enough on your own, only to go to hell because you did not trust in the perfect One who died and shed His blood for you – the only way offered for salvation. Will you accept His payment, or will you continue to try and do your best only to fall short? May today be the day you accept Him, and may today be the day that changes your life for all eternity.