One of the greatest feelings in the world is making your final house payment! That calls for celebration!
But imagine the following scenario. A couple has a large balloon payment tacked onto their mortgage. For years they have been salting away extra money for it. Finally the day arrives to make that payment. They eagerly go to the bank. They are grinning ear to ear as they lay their money down on the banker’s desk. But as he examines it, he begins to frown. After further examination he informs them that all their money is counterfeit. Not only are they still in debt, but the time to pay off that debt has now expired. They are ruined!
That is what will happen to people on Judgment Day – to people who – in any way – rely on their own works to get to heaven. Salvation rests entirely on Jesus’ payment for sin. All those who mix in their works with Jesus’ work are adding nothing but counterfeit money – worthless money that causes them to default on their debt.
This is why Mormonism is so dangerous. It does talk about salvation by grace, but it denies the teaching of salvation by grace alone. We see that even in the LDS author who speaks the most about grace, Robert L. Millet. He wrote a book entitled Grace Works. His whole premise is, as the back cover of the book quotes him as saying, “We have an obligation to cooperate with God in the salvation of our souls. While the ultimate power of change is in Christ, we can do our part and choose to be changed.”
But the Bible says God’s grace and man’s works don’t mix when it comes to salvation. “And if by grace, then it is no more of works, otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace; otherwise work is no more work.” (Romans 11:6) It’s like the scenario above. It doesn’t matter what percentage of the mortgage is paid by counterfeit money. As long as any of it is paid with counterfeit money, the couple is still in debt. As long as a person is relying on what he does to be saved – no matter what percentage of his salvation he attributes to his efforts – he is still in debt and thus in deep trouble. Talking about grace is not enough. The issue is all about salvation by grace alone.