Satan wields a two-edged sword in the process of tempting us to abandon our faith. His argument goes something like this: “It only makes sense that God would expect you to perform for your salvation,” all the while criticizing us: “Give it up! You’re a failure! You’ll never be able to overcome that sin. Face it: you can’t please God unless you work at this thing a little harder!” But why should this surprise us? Doesn’t the Bible clearly describe Satan as both the deceiver and the accuser of God’s people?
We can’t earn our way into good standing with God! Through Christ, God made provision for our righteousness in spite of our sin. Doing good pleases God. Of course it does! But it’s not what ultimately satisfies Him. Our relationship with God rests on one thing alone—being in Christ—enjoying righteousness anchored in God’s provision rather than in our own efforts.