Some people believe that good works are like a “get out of hell free” card. What these folks do not realize is that an individual isn’t condemned by the Lord because of the things he does. He is condemned because of what he is—a person with a spirit bent away from God. We choose to sin because it is our nature to do so.
To find proof that mankind does not naturally obey, all one has to do is observe any two-year-old child. Why does a toddler tug on the lamp cord after his mom says, “Don’t touch!”? His impulse to do what he wants is greater than his desire to please Mother.
Complying with authority is a choice that we learn to make. In the meantime, we all have a rebellious nature. Not one single person is good enough or wise enough to remain sinless and pleasing before the Lord. Therefore, we have all sinned and are under a death sentence (Rom. 3:23; 6:23).
The Word of God says that until the moment of salvation, we are dead in our trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1). This means that although the body has not yet undergone physical death, the spirit is lifeless apart from the Lord. We are helpless to save ourselves.
We are a people in need of rescue. The instant we receive the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, our spirit is brought to life and our heart undergoes transformation. In the moment that God saves you, He makes you into a new creature—one with a nature surrendered to Him and His will.