Christian Theology, Biblical Theology

"You are no longer under law but grace; therefore, sin shall not have dominion over you" "The grace of God has appeared teaching men to say no to sin"

Biblical Grace

True Biblical Grace vs False Teachings
King David does repentanceImage via Wikipedia
True biblical grace. Most Christians teach that grace is “God’s unmerited favor”. This is; however, erroneous, overly simplistic, and incomplete. This definition comes from our hymns and not the bible. This definition often entails the concept that grace is strictly a New Testament phenomenon and implies that Christ fulfilled God’s moral law for us; therefore, the Christian is no longer under this moral law for salvific purposes. Often Christians are taught that Christ fulfilled the moral law and since He dwells in you, He has fulfilled the moral law of God on your behalf. Now all that God sees when He looks down from heaven is Christ in you and, "His" imputed righteousness becomes yours. This teaching is nothing short of antinomianism (against the law), no where in the bible is grace defined in these terms. As you will read, God's grace under the NT is the "power" to live above sin; not a pardon from sin nor the abrogation of His moral law.

God has been saving people by grace through faith since the beginning of time. Abraham’s faith was reckoned as righteousness, even the Jews were saved through their faith in what God had revealed to them. They were saved through faith which "manifested" itself by keeping the dietary and ceremonial laws of God. They were never saved by these laws but God gave the Jews these as a pictorial of the coming Christ, but in observing them they demonstrated their faith in God's promise. Enshrouded in these dietary and ceremonial laws was also the moral law of God which has always been His will since time immemorial.  God rules his angelic realm and the universe through moral law just as much as He rules us, and to think that we can sneak into heaven by disobeying His moral laws is as much a sham as the devil thinking he could over-take heaven by his own moral law. The grace they had under the law prior to Christ was the Holy Spirit abiding with them and the sacrifices that God gave them to cover their sins. God in His grace or graciousness gave them the sacrificial system to expiate their sins. He didn't have to but because He is a gracious God, He did.

Christ did fulfill the law and the prophets, but His fulfilling the law was in His fulfillment of the prophecies and the stories foretold by the sacrifices of His coming; and not in some active or passive righteousness sense of fulfillment as taught by most Evangelicals. Christ fulfilled the sacrificial and ceremonial law - not the moral law. I couldn't imagine a mayor or governor ruling their cities or states without imposing a moral law on the citizens - much less the King of the universe governing without His moral law. God's moral law is still in effect with the consequences of eternal death still in place. A law without consequences is no law at all; yet many would teach that breaking His moral law doesn't carry the consequences outlined in the bible. The bible says the wages of sin is death - Evangelicals say the wages of sin is "broken fellowship".

God demands holiness from His people and these expectations have remained unchanged throughout the many dispensations. Consider Job and the trials he went through; God was honored to take notice that in all he went through he sinned not. Job walked with God during a period of time when he didn't have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to aid him in his walk. I ask can the average Christian today who has the power of the Holy Spirit go one day without sinning, much less survive the trials of Job? Why don't they?

Paul tells us to preach the full counsel of God. He also tells us what grace is in Romans 6:14 “For sin shall not be master over you for you are under grace and not law”. Titus 2:11 “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in this present age”. There you have it! Grace is the power to live holy and without sin; to live as Job lived every day of your lives. 

I would go as far to say that if you are a Christian and sin daily you are not standing in the grace of God and are under condemnation. I John 2:5 tells us "But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him, by this we know that we are in Him." Paul tells us in Romans 6:15-19 that we are to present ourselves as slaves to righteousness and not slaves of sin. This scripture carries with it the implication that we are morally neutral and can choose a life of bondage to sin or holiness. Unfortunately most Christians are taught that they are condemned to living a life of sin until they go to the grave…nothing could be further from the truth. Especially when you consider that we have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us to give us an advantage that even Job didn’t have. Jesus said in John 8:34 “Everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin”; we become enslaved to sin of our own free will – men are not born sinners.

Why not take Paul’s advice and walk in the grace of God; submit the members of your body to righteousness instead of sin. Old habits are hard to break but with the power of the Holy Spirit and some determination, you can live a righteous life. John in his first letter wrote these words in 1 John 3:7 “Little Children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous.” Additionally Peter writes in 1 Peter 1:16 and 22 "Because it is written Be holy for I am holy", and verse 22 "Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit..." Here Peter is assuming as Paul often does that we have the righteous of Christ because we have the power to be holy through the Holy Spirit - not by some "imputed righteousness". 1 John 3:3 "And everyone who has this hope purifies himself, just as He is pure"; this doesn't sound like imputed righteousness does it?

Fellow Christians, don’t be deceived by the spurious teaching on grace and inability to walk without sin in your lives. I can’t think of a more offensive doctrine to God and the death of His Son than one that teaches that God expects His Children to live sinful lives. 1 John 2:1 tells us “I am writing you these things that you may not sin” and Jesus tells us to be as perfect as our Heavenly Father; and God the Father says to “be ye holy for I am holy”.

I find it sickening that when I discuss the topic of holiness with pastors and Christians; what lengths they will go to in order to defend sin. I seldom, almost never find Christians defending God, and finding arguments to live holy and way to honor Him.
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