Q. Do we make it to heaven based on how well we keep the Ten Commandments?
A. No, we have all broken God’s law; our only hope is through the Savior, Christ Jesus.
Many people believe that if they are a good enough person—if they never kill, commit adultery, or rob a bank—then they will go to heaven when they die. But this mistaken idea assumes that God only cares about a few commandments.
The truth is, God is just as concerned with coveting as He is with killing. We might rank the commands in order based on our criminal justice system, but our ways are not God’s ways.
In fact, it doesn’t matter if we have never murdered or cheated on a spouse; the Bible tells us that if we have broken one part of God’s law, we are guilty of breaking all the law (James 2:10).
We cannot stand before God on Judgment Day and brag about how well we kept the Ten Commandments. Even our best efforts fall pitifully short.
What this all amounts to is a guilty verdict. We are totally depraved and thus separated from a holy God. Instead of jail, we face hell.
That’s where the Savior comes in. Jesus did for us what we could never do for ourselves (He is the only one to never break a commandment). His death on the cross as our substitute satisfied the Father, and if we will repent and depend on the ransom that Jesus paid, we can be saved.
The verdict is guilty, but the Judge sentenced Jesus on our behalf.