I am not a carpenter. I am not the son of a carpenter, and I don’t pretend to be an expert in this field. But over the years as I have been involved in various projects around the house, I’ve learned a few tricks of the trade.

One very helpful carpentry tip is to clinch your nails. When nails are driven through wood, the expansion and contraction caused by changes in the weather makes them come out again. Clinching the nail involves using a hammer to bend the pointed tip of the nail over so that it cannot pop out.

The Apostle Paul clinched the gospel like a nail in a board. There was no way either the ravages of time or the enemies of God could wrest the foundational element of salvation by grace through faith from the gospel message. Paul did everything he could to reinforce the foundation laid by his Savior, and the gospel yet stands today.

Our generation needs “nail-clinching believers” who will take the stands Paul took for the faith. We must defend the gospel from false doctrines and expose them. Common falsehoods today include the belief in faith plus works for salvation. This subtle heresy attacks the sufficiency of Christ’s work on the cross. If we must do our part plus believe in Christ, then Christ didn’t do enough.

Another falsehood is the idea of salvation by works. This undermines the need for Christ’s atonement. If man is saved by works, then Jesus did not need to die. Man could then assert his personal merits for salvation.

Only when we assert that salvation is by faith alone in Christ are we aligned with the testimony of Scripture. Jesus clinched the nail, and we must propagate this message throughout the world. When the need arises, we must also be prepared to defend this message. Let others see that your faith holds steadfast and true today.

Click here to learn how to “clinch the nail” when you share your faith with others.

The saints in Heaven are happier but no more secure than are true believers here in this world. — Loraine Boethner

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.