I have read David Wilkerson’s Pulpit Series which comes out every third week for about 25 years. Never once was my heart not challenged, nor did I ever read anything out of line with Scripture. This past year his son Gary took over since his Father’s death and I have been blessed by his writings also. But today I read his June 11, 2012 sermon entitled ‘Christ is the End’ and I was disappointed. In the sixth from the last paragraph he states that it is not up to us to put forth some effort to avoid sin, but it is totally up to Jesus. This advocates a dangerous teaching that we are void of even the slightest responsibility. It is true that Christ is the end of the law (Romans 10:4), but no where does the New Testament teach that it is the end of individual responsibility. Romans 8:6 in the NLT states it quite well, “So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.”
I believe Gary Wilkerson also missed what James 2:24 clearly says, which is: “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.” The New Testament is overflowing with action verbs that we are to grab a hold of and incorporate into our lives as Christians.
Justification is like a Hershey bar. It is already made and paid for. All you need to do is take it from Jesus, unwrap it and bite into it to enjoy it.
Sanctification is like a Lego set. All the pieces and directions are included. All you need to do is take it from the Holy Spirit and begin putting it together.
Just like Lego and Hershey have copyrights, the LORD copyrights Justification and Sanctification. No one else can copy it or take credit for it. But, whether it be Lego or Hershey or whether it be Justification or Sanctification, there is a small part for us to play. Lego and Hershey need consumers. The LORD needs us to open the door to our heart when He knocks (read Revelation 3:20). Afterwards we need to work out our salvation with fear and trembling (read Philippians 2:12).
To sum it all up, our LORD is a gentleman. He will not force Himself or His ways upon us, but we must allow Him access. As we allow Him, we can never become prideful that it is ‘me’ and not ‘Him’ that did it all. He paid it all. We just need to make a conscious effort to enjoy the benefits. In simple words: We need to cooperate with grace!