Every sinner who is saved is saved by the grace of God. No one can earn salvation because no one has done anything to deserve salvation! When Rev. Alistair Begg, the pastor of Parkside Church in Cleveland, wanted to drive home this important point, he gave the following account of chasing down the thief on the cross in Heaven…in his Scottish accent, of course.
Think about the thief on the cross. I can’t wait to find that fella, one day, to ask him, “How did that shake out for you, because you were cussing the Guy out with your friend…. You’ve never been in a Bible study…. You never got baptized…. You didn’t know a thing about church membership…. And yet, and yet, you made it! You made it! How’d you make it?!?!”
That’s what the angel must have said! “What are you doing here?”
“I don’t know.”
“What do you mean you don’t know?!?!”
“Well, cause I don’t know!”
“Well…you…uh…did ya…excuse me. Let me get my supervisor.” He goes and gets the supervisor angel.
“So, just a few questions for you. First of all, are you clear on the doctrine of justification by faith?”
The guy said, “I never heard of it in my life!”
“And what about – let’s just go to the doctrine of Scripture immediately.
This guy’s just staring….
And eventually, in frustration, he says, “On what basis are you here?”
And he said, “The Man on the middle cross said I could come.”