Foy E. Wallace, Jr.
Cornelius was devout—strict and conscientious. He feared God. He prayed, not occasionally when called upon, but always. He was benevolent—gave alms to the poor. His moral character challenges the best of us (Acts 10). Yet Cornelius was not saved. An angel told him to send for Peter who would tell him words whereby he and his “house shall be saved” (Acts 11:14).
The Saviour of all who are saved knows what the unsaved must do to be saved. And He, with marked and accurate simplicity, said, “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mark 16:15-16).
The Lord made no exceptions. Who of us will dare do so? Salvation consists in doing, not merely in being. “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” If morality alone saves, the death of Christ is void and man dictates the plan of salvation.