I read about an instant cake mix that was a big flop. The instructions said all you had to do was add water and bake. The company couldn’t understand why it didn’t sell – until their research discovered that the buying public felt uneasy about a mix that required only water. Apparently people thought it was too easy. So the company altered the formula and changed the directions to call for adding an egg to the mix in addition to the water. The idea worked and sales jumped dramatically.
That story reminds me of how some people react to the plan of salvation. To them it sounds too easy and simply to be true, even though the Bible says, “By grace you have been saved through faith …; it is the gift of God, not of works” (Ephesians 2:8-9). They feel that there is something more they must do, something they must add to God’s “recipe” for salvation. They think they must perform good works to gain God’s favor and earn eternal life. But the Bible is clear – we are saved, “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy” (Titus 3:5).
Unlike the cake mix manufacturer, God has not changed His “formula” to make salvation more marketable. The gospel we proclaim must be free of works, even though it may sound too easy. – Richard W. De Haan
Salvation is a gift of God,
Not something earned or won;
He freely gives eternal life
To all who trust His Son. – Sper
We are saved by God’s mercy, not by our merit – by Christ dying, not by our doing.
- June 2, 1992, Our Daily Bread