Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘law’

Living in Grace

There seems to be some confusion among Christians in regard to grace living and law living. I usually don’t write this long of an article, but felt the added scriptures were necessary to show that living by the law is no longer necessary, thanks to the grace Jesus provided.

I think the mistake a lot of  Christians make is that we don’t truly accept the whole idea of grace. Grace is a free gift given to us by God. When Jesus died, he took all our sins upon Himself and destroyed them, covering them with His blood. We were totally unable to fulfill the law and live a perfect life, so He lived a perfect life for us and then took our sinful nature upon Himself and provided salvation for all who would accept Him (Galatians 2:16, 19-21  nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified… For through the Law I died to the Law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly”).

He then put His perfect, righteous nature in us and made us sons and daughters of God. Nothing we did, and nothing we can do can add to it, or pay for it. It is a totally free gift provided by Christ. It is hard for us to accept this without feeling the need to do something to justify God’s love for us. We think that if we do this or that and don’t do this sin or that sin, then we are worthy to come to God. This is performance based living and not grace. Grace is a gift. Grace is God seeing us as perfect and righteous, not of our own doing, but the free gift provided by Jesus’ blood.

Jesus lived by the 10 commandments, but here is the important part, we need to remember that Jesus lived under the Old Covenant Law (Galatians 4:4,5 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons). Jesus had to live by and obey all the commandments, ceremonial rules and laws so He could fulfill the old covenant. Jesus said on the cross, ‘it is finished’, meaning He had lived under the Old Covenant, lived a perfect life and fulfilled the law, thereby making Him the perfect sacrificial Lamb that would take away the sins of the world.

Not until the time of His death and resurrection was the Law fulfilled and a New Agreement took effect. The new covenant did not start until this time. This new agreement is one in which we live by grace, and not by trying to fulfill the Law, which we never could do in the first place. That is why Jesus came to earth, because we could not live a perfect life and keep all the commands and laws of the Old Agreement. So since the old covenant has been fulfilled and we live by grace, why do so many of us still feel a need to try to live by old testament rules and regulations, since we never could do it anyway? Why do we seem to want to put ourselves back under slavery to an old testament set of rules when Christ has already fulfilled them and done away with that need (Galatians 5:1-4 It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. Behold I, Paul, say to you that if you receive circumcision (a part of the law), Christ will be of no benefit to you. And I testify again to every man who receives circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law. You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace). When we accepted Christ as our sacrifice, we in a sense died also. And since we died, we can now live free from the law (Romans 7:1-8 “Or do you not know, brethren (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law has jurisdiction over a person as long as he lives? For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband. So then, if while her husband is living she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress though she is joined to another man. Therefore, my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death. But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.” What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? May it never be! On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, “you shall not covet.” But sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, produced in me coveting of every kind; for apart from the Law sin is dead”).

Before grace, we could not live up to the law because we are an imperfect people. Now that Jesus has become our perfect sacrifice and fulfilled what we could not, we are saved by grace and we live a perfect sinless life in God’s eyes because of the gift He gave us. We are sinless in God’s eyes because of Christ, although we still fall from time to time in this life, it is all covered by the blood of Christ, where sin abounds, grace much more abounds. We are no longer required to live up to the Law that we couldn’t live up to in the first place. If we try to fulfill the Law but fall in just one area, we are guilty of all the law and worthy of death.

Now that we live by grace and faith in Jesus, the law, which was our tutor to point out our sin, is no longer needed (Galatians 3:23-26  But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor (the law). For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus). To say we need to live trying to obey the 10 commandments is saying that Jesus blood alone was not enough to cleanse us from our sins.

The Bible goes so far as to say that if we still try to live by obeying the old covenant law we live under a curse (Galatians 3:10-13 For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, “cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law, to perform them.” Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; for, “the righteous man shall live by faith.” However, the Law is not of faith; on the contrary, “he who practices them shall live by them.” Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us, for it is written, “cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”).

Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (Mat. 5:43-48). Obviously there is no way we can do this on our own, and God wouldn’t have told us to be perfect without making a way for us to do it. The only way we can be perfect, is through grace. Accepting the free gift of grace through Christ will allow us to live out the new covenant commands of Christ, which are to accept Christ, love God and love others. The law that is mentioned under the new covenant is always to accept Jesus, love God and love others (Galatians 5:14  For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “you shall love your neighbor as yourself”; (1 John 3:23 This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us); (1 John 4:21 And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also); (2 John 1:6  And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love). We are totally incapable of living up to the law and we are no longer required to do so. Christ died and by His grace, He put His righteousness in us and we are perfect and righteous in God’s sight.

God has provided such a fantastic gift of freedom for us, and most of us today just don’t realize all that entails. Because of grace, it is as though we have never sinned and will never sin. Not because of anything we have done, or can do, but because God loves us enough that he sent his Son to take our sins, past present and future, and because of His grace we stand perfect in the eyes of God. Now we need to walk in that freedom and follow the Spirit, loving God, loving others and not worry about the old covenant law, but live a life for God through love (Galatians 5:16-18  But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law).

Thanks be to God, we now live in grace, not trying to live up to rules and laws that we cannot do on our own, being free in Christ and living a life of love for God and for all we come in contact. We no longer do things because we are bad or displeasing to God if we don’t, but now we do them because we love God and want to do what pleases Him.

Read Full Post »

When does the Old Covenant end and the New Covenant begin? We tend to forget that the Old Covenant does not end with Malachi and the New Covenant does not start with Matthew.

For the 33 years that Jesus walked the earth, He was still under the Old Covenant, which required following all its rules and regulations.

The New Covenant began when Jesus was crucified. When He said ‘It is finished’, He was talking about the Law, the Old Covenant. Upon His resurrection the New Covenant began and we are no longer required to try and live under the Law, and the way of the Old Covenant.

The old agreement was basically a tutor. A way God used to show humans that we were unable to live a perfect life on our own. It was a way to show us that we needed someone to save us from our sin. Once Jesus came and lived a perfect life on earth, He was able to be the sacrifice that fulfilled the Law and save each of us from our sinful nature (Matthew 5:17).

Now that the Law has been fulfilled in Christ, we are no longer required to try to live by the ten commandments, and the rules and regulations of the Old Covenant (Galatians 5:1-6). To many times we seem to forget that because of grace we now live by faith in Christ. We are no longer slaves to sin, we are no longer just a poor sinner saved by grace, although we were sinners and we are saved by grace. We are now the righteousness of God, through Christ. God no longer calls us slaves, but He calls us Sons (John 15:15). We are seated in heavenly places in Christ (Ephesians 2:6). This isn’t to say that we should go out and do what ever we want, right or wrong (Galatians 5:13). We do have freedom in Christ to do what we choose, but of course there are consequences if we choose things that God has warned us to stay away from.

Today we choose to live a life pleasing to God because of love (Matthew 22:37-40). Godly love is the fulfillment of the Law (Galatians 5:14, Romans 13:8 and 10, 1 John 3:23). We love God, we’ve been made righteous through Christ, and we are the temple of the Holy Spirit, who guides us, teaches us, and gives us strength. We do what is pleasing to God because we choose to out of love for Him, not out of obligation or because we are trying to fulfill a set of rules and Old Testament laws that we couldn’t live up to anyway.

Read Full Post »

Galatians 3:24, 25

The Law very clearly was used under the Old Covenant as a tutor, a set of rules to basically keep us in line. The Law was there for us to follow, and if we kept it entirely, we would be perfect and could obtain salvation.

Unfortunately, due to the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, evil had control over the earth and we mere men could not live up to the standards of the Law. We kept falling short and were unable to obtain perfect living by the Law.

The Law showed us that we were in need of someone to save us. We were unable to do it ourselves. The Law, through its rules and regulations were ineffective to bring us to salvation.

Fortunately, Jesus came and lived on this earth and was able to fulfill the Law. He lived a perfect life and fulfilled every part of the Law up through His death on the cross.

At that point, He said ‘It is finished’, meaning that fulfillment of the Law was complete in Him and He was now the perfect sacrifice for us. The Old Covenant was a thing of the past and a New Covenant began at His resurrection.

Now we live through love. We love God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind, and we love others as ourselves (Galatians 5:14).

Jesus lives in us and He has fulfilled the Law. We now live by faith in Christ and are saved through His grace. We no longer need to worry about trying to fulfill the Law or any part of the Old Covenant.

Jesus fulfilled all that was needed to provide for our salvation. We live through faith in Christ and depend on Him solely for our salvation. We are no longer slaves to the Law, but we are sons of God (John 15:15). We are righteousness in God’s eyes because He sees Jesus in us.

Read Full Post »

Philippians 2:3-7 – Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.

In today’s world, it seems everyone has the I’m number 1 attitude. We are all interested in what is best for us, what makes us happy, how to be more comfortable and satisfied in our lives. Seems like we will do anything we can to get ahead in life, to get all the comforts and ‘things’ to make it easier for us.

These verses state that as followers of Christ, we should be doing just the opposite. Our thoughts and attitudes should be how we can show the love of God to others, what we can do to help those in need, how can we use the money God has blessed us with to help the less fortunate.

God says that the fulfillment of the Law is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength and mind and to love others as yourself. While the jobs and ‘things’ we have been given and blessed with by God are not wrong, we need to keep in mind that they are not the important part of our lives. We are to be thinking of others and their need for love, acceptance and help. How can we encourage and build up someone, how can we help meet a need in their life.

There is nothing wrong with taking thought of our wants, needs and interests. The verse states ‘do not merely look our for your own interests’. Unfortunately, many times our own interests are all that concern us. May we daily ask for God to help us think of others and be ready to care for them in any way possible with God’s leading.

Read Full Post »

Romans 6:14 – For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace

This says to me that people who try to fulfill the law and try to earn their salvation by good works are the ones that sin rules over.

Those who have accepted grace through faith are free from the law and now dead to sin. Verse 11 tells us to ‘consider yourselves to be dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus’.

In verse 23 we are told that ‘the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord’. This doesn’t just mean physical death, but can also mean spiritual death. We can be dead to the things of Christ, either by being an unbeliever or by trying to follow the law.

Through grace we can live a life pleasing to God, dead to sin and alive to God. Through grace we enter into eternal life with God in the present.

Read Full Post »

Romans 13:8-10 – Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another, for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, ‘you shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not covet,’ and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor, therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

To love others is to fulfill the law.

The Old Testament law was given as a guide to show people that they could not measure up to pleasing God. If anyone could keep all of the law, then they were perfect. Unfortunately, we humans cannot live a perfect life. The law showed us that we could not do it.

When Christ came in bodily form and lived on earth, He lived a perfect life. He became the perfect sacrifice that would once and for all make a way for us to be considered ‘perfect’ in God’s eyes and be able to receive the gift of salvation.

When we live in love, we are fulfilling the law. We no longer do ‘things’ out of obligation, or out of a need to earn God’s love and favor. We no longer have to keep the 10 commandments to earn our salvation. Salvation is now a gift given to us. When we love others as we love ourselves, our lifestyle will be one that actually fulfills the law by the way we live and love.

Am I saying that we shouldn’t try to live by the 10 commandments? In a way yes. We can’t. When we live in love we will be living a life that is pleasing to God without trying to live by laws and regulations. If we are depending on the law, regulations, doing things to earn God’s love, then we are wasting our time. Once we are living in grace (God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense), only what is done out of love for Christ will make a difference.

Read Full Post »

James 2:18 You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works…..

I have always read this verse with the thought of works being things I do to earn what God has given me, salvation. Maybe not earn, but pay back for what God has done. After thinking a little about this, I think that what is being said isn’t paying God back by doing good things. Our works are a result of our love for Christ and what He did for us. Our works are our actions that we do day by day. Our actions are a result of spending time with Christ and learning from Him.

We need to truly be His disciples. A disciple is one who spends time with the Teacher, listens to His every word, watches how He acts, spends all his time with the Teacher, eating, sleeping, talking, traveling, learning, just like the disciples of Jesus. It is then that our actions will mimic those of Christ. The Bible says we can be no better than our teacher, but when Christ is our Teacher, we have the best.

When our actions are the same as His, people will no longer see us but they will see Jesus. Our actions, or works, then show the love of God to the world. Our ‘good’ works as far as we normally think of works, and our words do not mean a lot, but our actions speak louder than either.

Read Full Post »

Galatians 2:16 – nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus…….

We Christians sometime spend our time trying to obey the 10 Commandments and trying to do the right thing, when in actuality, we don’t need to be trying to keep the law at all.

We will go to church every time the door is open, tithe our 10 percent, we will not smoke, drink, dance, go to movies, we will look down and condemn those who do or do not do what we feel the Bible commands. We feel guilty every time we mess up and think God is going punish us if we do not do everything we know is ‘right’ to do as Christians.

What happened to grace? What happened to being saved through faith in Christ, and Him alone. Not Jesus and baptism, not Jesus and doing this or that, not Jesus and refraining from doing certain things. We are saved through faith in Christ and to be quite blunt, we do not ‘have’ to do any of these things or do not ‘have’ to avoid certain things to be a child of God. We have a freedom in Christ that was bought and paid for with the death and resurrection of Jesus. That does not mean we just live our lives doing whatever we want, but we living in the freedom we have through grace. We do things out of love, love for God and love for others. It is no longer out of obligation or trying to follow any law.LoveGod

Let’s stop putting all the rules and regulations on others that we think will make them better people and love them with the love of Christ and let God lead them in the way He wants them to go.

Read Full Post »

Roman 6:10 – For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God….

Most of us ask for forgiveness at least once a day. Is it really necessary?

When Christ died, He died to sin ONCE for all. Jesus doesn’t die daily, He doesn’t need to come back and die once a year for our sins. Jesus died once and it was for our sins past, present and future. In God’s eyes, we are now righteous and seated in heavenly places with Christ.

Unfortunately we will continue to sin, but we don’t need to continually ask for forgiveness because we are already forgiven. What we should do is tell God we are sorry that we messed up and thank Him for the forgiveness He provided us through Christ.

Read Full Post »

1 John 4:7 NASB
For us Christ followers, love is the name of the game so to speak. God is love. If we know God and are born again, we live in love. We will love God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind and we will love others as ourselves. This is how they will know we are disciples of Christ, by our love for one another.

In the Old Testament the law was given as a standard to measure up to, a way to earn salvation. Basically to fulfill the law we had to be perfect. Of course, none of us could or can be perfect so the law was given to lead us to Christ. When Christ came, died and rose again, He conquered the law, sin and death and bought our salvation for us through His grace.

Now we no longer have to live trying to fulfill the law. This isn’t to say that we necessarily have to ignore what is written in the Old Testament, but we no longer have to try to live up to the law to earn God’s love and our salvation. We are no longer obligated to obey the law because we now live in love.

Just as a husband stays faithful to his wife because he loves her, not because it is wrong to commit adultery, so now we live our lives pleasing to God because we love Him and He loves us, not because we are afraid of the consequences if we break a law.

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts

Count it all joy

Spiritual Hope . Joyful Faith . Trust in God

Follow Your Arrow

Unashamed of who God made us to be, and unapologetic in our pursuit of God and our purpose in His kingdom

Night•Dawn•Day

A Doctor's Reflections on Psychology and Spirituality • Give Light, and the Darkness will Disappear of Itself

Done with Religion

Done with Religion ... Not Done with God

The Grace Cafe Journal

Discovering Grace Apart From Religion

Sophia's Essays

This is where I post my essays, primarily about LGBTQ+ issues, politics, and Christian theology.

My Journey

Welcome. My blog is a place where readers will find writings of personal experiences, thoughts, and the peace that the Lord provides throughout my walk. I intend to bring inspiration and insight, as well as providing a very personal and transparent view into my life, in order to help others see their own lives in a different perspective. I strongly believe that we all need a different view at times, in order for our own personal growth to take place.

Hazy Divinity

Welcome To The Party

Candice Czubernat

A leading voice in the LGBTQ and Christian dialogue

Our Journeys Matter! - Posts

Done with Religion ... Not Done with God

Ally's Notebook

Thoughts To Share

Life of a Prodigal

Searching for Truth outside the church walls

What God May Really Be Like - Misbeliefs About God

To those done with religion but not God and my kids (Click FOLLOW for future Posts; See ABOUT/USING THIS SITE tab to navigate Site)

Christy Lynne Wood

Looking for the real God

Confessions of a Recovering Churchboy

What I bought before, I just can't sell

Intermission

Reflections in the midst of life.

The Curious Atheist

Freely Seeking Truth After Religion

The Wild Frontier

The search for infinite Truth and the invincible Love of an incredible God.

Chris Kratzer

Grace // Jesus // Life

Stephen Bradford Long

Religion, Esotericism, Skepticism

A Wilderness Voice

"The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, says the LORD of hosts: and in this place will I give peace, says the LORD of hosts." (Hag 2:9)

Entering the Promised Land

by walking in the Spirit

TruthForFree.com

What You Won't Find In A Christian Bookstore

Beyond Church Walls

Done with Religion ... Not Done with God

Escape to Reality

Exploring the wide open spaces of God's amazing grace

%d bloggers like this: