Month: November 2014

There is no Grace without Law

One of the greatest misunderstandings about God’s New Covenant that people live under today is that this covenant is all grace and no law.

Now let me quickly say, on top of the fact that the Law of Moses is no longer in effect spiritually (Hebrews 8:6-7, 13), that I completely agree that the Bible teaches that no one is justified by the works alone of any law, because once a law is violated all a law can do is condemn (Acts 13:38-39; Romans 3:19-20; Galatians 2:16). But let me also quickly say I completely disagree with anyone who believes that this situation means we are no longer under any law today because of God’s grace (Romans 6:14-16).

As Christians we are indeed under law today. For example, there is:

  • the law of faith – “Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith.” (Romans 3:27)
  • the law of Christ – “to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ, that I might win those who are without law;” (1 Corinthians 9:21)
  • the law of the Spirit – “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:1-2)
  • the law of liberty – “For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all. For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty. For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment.” (James 2:10-13)

More could be said, but enough should be enough and enough has been said to help us see the truth of God’s will concerning law and sin and grace.

You see, there can be law without grace, but there can be no grace without law because without law there is no need for grace (Galatians 6:1-3). EA

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us…My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous…Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.” (1 John 1:9-10, 2:1, 3:4)

That coat of many colors is now one

Joseph’s coat of many colors; people have tried to envision what it would have looked like and the only thing I can say is that it must have stood out from all the other coats.

Joseph’s coat was a symbol of his father’s love, but his father’s love became something that his brothers hated. And no matter how much that coat cost Jacob, in the eyes of Joseph’s brothers that sign of love would end up costing Joseph.

Likewise, our spiritual Father has given us a coat to wear – a coat that is a symbol of his love, a coat of one color (John 3:16); but we must remember that as this coat stands out from all other coats people will hate it and it will cost us, but we must continue to wear it as a reminder of who we are to our Father (John 15:18-19; 1 John 3:13). EA

For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” (Galatians 3:26-27)

“…So he said to me, “These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” (Revelation 7:14)

There are going to be times when the preacher just won’t win…with people

“‘Preacher, shoot it straight’ – as long as you’re not shooting at me, my spouse, my children or my parents. But other than that, ‘Keep shooting preacher man.'”

There are going to be times when the preacher just won’t win…with people.

Oh yeah, those times when silence during a certain situation gets looked upon by some with contempt, while speaking up during the same situation garners the same amount of contempt from others. It’s true: it’s the ole’ “condemned if you do and condemned if you don’t” situation, to put it nicely. This is why the preacher’s goal must not be to win with people during every situation, because that goal will miss the goal the majority of the time.

So think about that the next time you feel like the preacher took a personal shot at you, when all he was doing was speaking the truth for your benefit in a way that’s probably not as personal as you think (1 Corinthians 10:32-33; Galatians 1:10). EA

I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word! Be ready in seasonand out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” (2 Timothy 4:1-4)

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