Details, Details
by Kimberly B. Southall
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Details, details . . . so often we don't like to be bothered with details. But they are a necessary part of this life. In fact, details are a necessary part of eternity, too-at least if you want to spend it in the presence of God. Details are essential to your salvation. Several comparisons can be made to stress this point:
  • If you place the wrong key in your car, will the engine start? The answer, of course, is no. The right key is an essential detail.
  • If you or your employer accidentally use the wrong Social Security number when applying the tax to your account over the years, will the appropriate amount of funds be automatically available upon your retirement? No. Using the correct number is an essential detail.
  • If you are following a map and you accidentally take the wrong road, will you still end up at Aunt Ethel's house? No, not unless you backtrack and take the right road. Taking the right road is an essential detail in this case, too.
  • If you dial a phone number incorrectly, do you still reach the desired party? Of course not! The small detail of just a single digit is crucial.
  • If your computer program is missing just one small file which is required for it to load, will it still load? No, you will receive a "file not found" error message, and until you correct that detail, you won't be accessing that program.
  • When using the Internet, if you type one wrong character in the web address, will you still be able to access the web page you sought? No, one wrong character is a significant detail.
  • If you have a serious medical condition or illness, what would happen if you mistakenly took the wrong dosage or medication? Not only would you not get better, but the chances are significant that you would actually get worse! The details of your medication are very important.
If all of these sorts of wrong details listed above won't work, then why would anyone think the wrong details in God's plan of salvation would? God's grace just doesn't work that way. It is really so very simple. In His Word, the Bible, God gave us all of the details we need in order to receive the gracious gift of salvation He has made possible for us. Yes, that is His grace. Even though we didn't deserve it, He supplied a single plan for our salvation through the death, burial, and resurrection of His only Son. And He has given us the right details in the Bible about how to reach that salvation through His Son. If we don't choose to use the right plan, then we are rejecting that grace! That would, in effect, be saying that we can somehow achieve our own salvation on our own terms or in our own way. We would be usurping the very authority of God!

The Bible assures us there is one way only to achieve salvation-through Jesus Christ (John 14:6). And His Word tells us all of the details we need in order to go through Him to reach that salvation. Why would anyone want to overlook those vital details in the only possible way of achieving salvation at the risk of ending up with eternal damnation? Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). And throughout the Bible, we can see that God gave specific details which had to be followed in order achieve a certain end.

When God gave details to Noah as to how to save himself and his family from the flood to come, he followed every single detail in building and supplying the ark. Consequently, God saved Noah and his family (Genesis 6:9-8:22; Hebrews 11:7).

When the Israelites crossed the Jordan in order to take the land God had promised to them, there were very specific details they had to follow in order to take the fortified city of Jericho. The commander of the Lord's army instructed Joshua. He and the Israelites obeyed to the very last detail, and the walls of Jericho collapsed. They took the city as God promised (Joshua 5:13-6:27; Hebrews 11:30).

When Naaman was afflicted with leprosy, God instructed him through Elisha the prophet to dip in the Jordan river seven times. At first, Naaman was angry and wondered why the other rivers wouldn't be better. But the Jordan was a vital detail in the solution prescribed by God. Finally, a servant talked some sense into Naaman and into the Jordan he went. He wasn't cleansed of the leprosy on the first, second, or third dip. Dipping seven times was another vital detail. After he dipped the seventh time in the Jordan, Naaman was immediately cleansed of the leprosy (2 Kings 5:1-14).

When Jesus' disciples couldn't drive an evil spirit out of one particular boy, they were perplexed when Jesus did. They asked why they had been unable to, and He explained that particular kind could come out only by prayer (Mark 9:14-29). Prayer was a vital detail the disciples had overlooked.

Likewise, today we still have to deal with very important details in our spiritual walk. In the Bible, God gives us the details we need to receive salvation. They are so very simple that anyone can understand and follow them:

Details, details. They are all there in the Word of God. Details, details. Follow them all--it's hell without them.

Copyright © 2000 Kimberly B. Southall. All rights reserved.