Am I good enough? Simply put. No! You are not!
Until each of us understands the basic biblical state of man, we cannot understand the
significance of the cross or understand God’s mercy or grace and how it applies to our lives.
One debate that has presented itself for centuries is: man is inherently good vs man is inherently
evil. The premise of either of these arguments is, by what standard do we do we assign the
control? Is man’s standard the control? Is God’s standard the control?
Each of us can find merit to support our claim that we are “good people.” This is because each
of us can find someone whose sin is greater than ours based upon our perception of what is
morally right or wrong. This view is fueled by subjectivity. Subjectivity is the belief that good
or bad is based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or opinions. By man’s standard
each of us are unique and morality is based upon our individual feelings. This means what is
right and morally correct for you may not be so for myself and vice versa. Essentially, we
become our own moral compass. By man’s standard each of us are inherently good. Biblically,
there is absolutely no evidence to support an assertion of morality based upon man’s subjective
Each of us finds no merit of good in ourselves because God has set the standard for what is good
and his standard is objective. Objective means existence apart from perception. In objective
morality, how we perceive things is independent from truth. Our feelings or interpretations do
not change what is right or wrong. With objective morality a moral compass is discovered not
invented. According to God’s standard, that moral compass is Jesus Christ. By God’s standard
each of us are inherently evil.
According to our Bible, good and evil are not subjective. Each of us are wicked in our un-
regenerated state and that wickedness stems from our own desires. According to the Gospel of
John, people love their constant state of evilness and choose sin over righteousness. Our desire
is to live in a state of rebellion and please the flesh.
John 3: 19 (ESV)
19…. the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light
because their works were evil.
The Apostle Paul quoted the Psalmist in Romans 3: 10-11 (ESV)
None is righteous, no, not one: no one understands; no one seeks for God.
According to Paul we are so bad that no one even desires to seek God. Just a side note, I love the
Apostle Paul. He had a very subtle way of expressing Biblical truth.
This brings to light a monumental question. How does sinful man reconcile to a Holy God?
According to scripture the standard set by God to be justified by our good deeds is set at such an
astonishing height that no human can nor do we desire out of pure intentions, to satisfy God’s
criteria. God cannot lower Himself to allow for our short comings. For him to lower Himself to
man’s standard would make Him an idolater. By lowering Himself, He is placing mankind
above Himself and defiling His Glory.
If God cannot lower his standards, how do we bridge the gap between sinful man and a Holy
God? Of course, the answer is the perfect sinless sacrifice of Jesus Christ. But, the more
intriguing question is how do we get Jesus Christ? American Christianity has failed miserably at
answering this paramount question. We have been fed emotionalism and prosperity gospel that
leads us to believe that we can somehow lower God’s objective moral standards to man’s
subjective filthy rags. Because of this, many never have the correct view of God or the correct
view of man. Without us having the correct view of God and man, saving faith will not occur.
Salvation is not spurred on by an apathetical confessional prayer that we recite to somehow trick
God, it begins with the fundamental understanding that God is Holy and you are not. Once that
truth is revealed to us by God’s grace, then we have an understanding of the significance of the
cross. Then we realize how hopelessly lost we truly are. That is when God is able to show us
how perfect His mercy and grace is applied to wretched sinners. That is when as stated in John
6:44, God draws us to Christ.
The gap between sinful man and God is bridged by God revealing himself to us through studying
His word or sound biblical teaching. His word read or preached correctly produces knowledge of
the sinful condition of man and the Holiness of God. It produces pure spirit filled affections
toward our Lord Jesus. This knowledge and affection produces faith in Jesus Christ alone as the
sole satisfaction of God’s judgment for the sins of those whom have earnestly responded to
Romans 10:17 (ESV)
So, faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of God.
Once justification by faith alone in Jesus is given through grace, we no longer are children of
wrath but become children of God. We no longer have the burden of trying to please God by
being “good enough,” because as children of God we have become perfect through the sacrifice
of Jesus Christ. He became sin for us.
2 Corinthians 5:21 (ESV)
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the
righteousness of God
And that is an amazingly liberating event.