Can Grace Be Taken For Granted

The message was brought by David Osborne.

The book of Romans gives us direction.  We’re repetitive in our day in and day out activities.  If we make our habits fit the Word of God it is a pleasure.  However, it needs to be more than habit.  God created us to live for him.   There are major doctrines in the book of Romans.  For Chapter 6, ask yourself can grace be taken for granted?

Romans 6: What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

Paul puts strong emphasis on his answer to the question when he said God forbid. We confuse the love of God and the holiness of God.  They are not contradictory.  They don’t go against each other.  Everything hinges on God’s love and it matches perfectly with his holiness.  It’s good to look on the positive side, but God is holy.  He will judge sin. We won’t be perfect but we should strive for holiness.  Follow the steps of Christ.  We cannot match what he did.  We won’t go through life without sin, but we shouldn’t have the habit of sin.   Grace doesn’t permit that.  You’ll see your mistakes.  He’ll convict you.  You will cry out for forgiveness.  If not, it begins to bother you.  If you don’t your conscience can get seared; you won’t feel it anymore.  Guard yourself against sin and the habit of it.

Sin is a natural-born effect of being part of Adam’s race.  Paul asked why not keep sinning.  We are dead to sin.  We are new creatures in Christ.  When we put our trust in Jesus we were transformed.  Grace doesn’t want us to keep sinning but to stop.

The purpose is for us to walk differently.  Verse 4 says therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.  There is newness of life.  It’s not a different stride in our physical walk.  It’s our spiritual walk—how we act and react. Leave the old man in the grave so the new man can walk in newness of life.  The Christian life shouldn’t get stale.  If there is a distraction, it’s not God’s fault.  In life—among friends, husband and wife, employer and employee—it does take two to have a feud.  With God and me it takes one.  The problem is always me.  It is never God.  We’ll always struggle with this body.  That’s how it is.  God is not the problem.

We see the picture God gives of salvation.  In verses 4-6 we see about baptism.  What happened when Christ was crucified ended with his burial in a tomb.  That’s a symbol of what you let go.  Baptism is not salvation; it shows what happened in your heart.  To do down in baptism is a symbol of burial; to come up is a symbol of the resurrection.  We were once imprisoned by sin.  We buried that sin by Jesus Christ who was buried and rose again.  We are freed from those sins.  I’m free from separation from God.  Because I trusted Jesus I buried sin.  Chapter 11 tells us about the grafting.  The children of Israel were cut from the trunk and he grafted us in.  God chose to graft us.  He didn’t have to do it.  He loved us.

In verses 11-14 we see the presentation of our Lord.   Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.  For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.  Yield means to submit.  When you submit to unrighteousness it is against God.  When you submit to God it is righteousness.  It’s either sin and death or God and life.  Who do you want to submit to?  Be alive to Christ.

In verses 16-18 we see the potential on sin.  Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.  Notice were.  This is past tense.  We were the servants of sin.  Now we’re servants of righteousness.  Understand there is still the potential to sin because of our nature, but it will shame us.  We see no shame in sin today.  Isaiah said woe to those who put bad for good.  That means a judgment to come.  We see it.  Now we as Christians are the bad guys.  We’re the ones considered as committing hate crimes.  If you live for Jesus Christ, even if the entire world is against you, remember God is for you.  Hold to him.  He always comes through 100% of the time.  Our bodies won’t come through.  Fame and fortune won’t come through.  Keep your trust in the Lord.

Can grace be taken for granted?  If you’re not growing you’re going backwards.  Purpose to grow.

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