He saved us because of his mercy, not because of any good things we did. He saved us through the washing that made us new people. He saved us by making us new through the Holy Spirit.
I will never forget the shame I felt after hanging up the phone with a lady from a new church I attended. She asked me if I believed in Jesus and did I believe I would go to Heaven. I said Yes and she asked me why I believed this. The first words out of my mouth were, “because I am a good person and I do good things.” The woman immediately followed up with, “well, that is fine, but you only get to Heaven because Jesus died for your sins, not because of anything you do.” I was mortified. I had just graduated from a Christian College, I had spent years in the Church…why wasn’t that my first answer??? As hard as it was to realize that I had answered in the wrong way, it has been one of the greatest lessons and reminders in my life. Jesus died for ME because He Loves Me! Not because of ANYTHING I have done or will do!
This is the message from Titus 3:5. Not because of any good things I did, but He saved me because of His mercy. There is nothing we can do to become righteous. It is the Holy Spirit’s job to transform us. It is our job to ask and allow the Holy Spirit to transform us. It is up to us how much we want to submit to Jesus on a daily basis. It is an everyday decision to draw close to Jesus and allow Him to transform us.
The devil wants nothing more than to make us feel like a failure. Just as I did when I hung up the phone with the lady from the church I visited (my stomach still churns when I reflect on it). I could have easily turned into myself and got wrapped up in my bad answer…BUT…that is where His mercy shines through. It is only because of Jesus that I can mess up and start again. He loves me and You that much! Jesus always has mercy for us and our slip ups. He continually calls us back to Him. We just have to be open and turn back to Him time and time again.