"For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ."   John 1:17

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          The moment we believe in Jesus Christ for our salvation we are saved.  “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16.  Jesus paid in full the price for all the sins of mankind. It is the shed blood of Jesus which cleanses us from all sin, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7.   So, what does “all sin mean? Does it mean we are cleansed from all sin only up to the point when we become saved and after that, it is our obedience to God’s Law which determines our salvation?  Absolutely not! 

 

           That would mean that right after Jesus cleanses us from “all sin”, the moment we sin again, we are right back in the same position we were in before He forgave us; a miserable sinner in need of salvation!  What kind of “Good News” would that be?!  That is truly no Gospel at all!  No, the Bible tells us that Jesus forgives us of “all sin and that is exactly what it means, all of our sin!  This means He has forgiven all the sins we have ever committed before we were saved, and He has already forgiven all the sins we will ever commit!  Think about it.  How many of your sins were future sins when Jesus died on the cross?  All of them!  Yes, all of your future sins have already been forgiven!!  This is the magnitude of God’s grace in which we now live as a result of our faith in His Son Jesus Christ!  “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into his grace in which we now stand.  And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:1-2.

 

           Billy Graham once said of grace, “Your human mind, with its philosophy of an equal return for favors done, can hardly comprehend the full meaning of this grace of God.  But when you catch, by the inspiration of God, its full meaning, you will leave the limits of human reasoning and revel in the spiritual riches of divine truth and privilege. Yes, the grace of God is a reality.  Thousands have tried, tested and proved that it is more than a cold creed, a docile doctrine or a tedious theory.  The grace of God has been tested in the crucible of human experience and has been found to be more than equal for the problems and sins of humanity.”

 

           “For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” Romans 6:14.  We do not live “in” and “out” of grace, depending on the presence or absence of sin in our lives.  His grace does not end when we sin, it begins!  Our sin is the  entire purpose for His grace!  Once we are saved through faith in Jesus Christ, we live forever in God’s grace!   If God’s grace does not cover all our sins and any part of our salvation depends on our own efforts (following the Law), then this would mean that Jesus died for nothing!  “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” Galatians 2:21. 

 

           This would also mean that Jesus would have to die over and over again to cleanse us of all the new sins we commit!!  The Bible specifically states that this is not the case, “He does not need to offer sacrifices every day like the other high priests.  They did this for their own sins first and then for the sins of the people. But Jesus did this once for all when he sacrificed himself on the cross.” Hebrews 7:27. (NLT)  That is why we are under no obligation to fulfill the requirements of the Law in order to receive salvation from God.  The only requirement for salvation is our faith in Christ!  Jesus has fulfilled all of the requirements of the Law for us, by his grace; something we could never do!  “The only way salvation can be certain is by grace; left to earn our salvation, we could never eradicate past sins, nor could we sustain unflagging effort at goodness over a lifetime.  So grace is partnered inseparably with faith; we are always on the receiving end from God.” Johnny V. Miller. 

 

           Through our faith in Christ, God looks upon us, now and forever, as if we have kept the entire Law perfectly!  This is truly “Good News”!  All the requirements of the Law are no longer upon us since through our faith in Christ, we are now righteous in the eyes of God for all time! “This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.” Romans 3:22.  This fact is one of the greatest blessings given to us by our Heavenly Father and one of the greatest sources of peace, assurance, and joy that Christians have!!  We no longer have to be burdened by guilt over sin, past or present.  We can trust all things to God.  We can trust in the cleansing power of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ’s shed blood and hold to the promises found in the Holy Word of God,“If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand.  His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7. (NLT) 

   

Does living under Grace mean that God’s Law is somehow “negated” or “abolished”?  Absolutely not!  Jesus Himself said, “Don’t misunderstand why I have come.  I did not come to abolish the Law of Moses or the writings of the prophets.  No, I came to fulfill them.”  Matthew 5:17. (NLT)  As John 1:17 states, “the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”  Jesus teaches us the true meaning and purpose of the entire law.  “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.  A second is equally important:  ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the other commandments and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”  Matthew 22:37-38. (NLT)  Through our faith in Christ, all the requirements of the Law are fulfilled. “Love does no wrong to anyone, so love satisfies all of God’s requirements.” Romans 13:10. (NLT)  We are free to simply love God and each other.

 

           Does this mean as Christians we can do whatever we want?  Of course not.  Grace is not a license to sin.   “What then?  Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?  By no means!” Romans 6:15.  The freedom we receive from our faith in Christ has a purpose, “For you have been called to live in freedom – not freedom to satisfy your sinful nature, but freedom to serve one another in love.  For the whole law can be summed up in this one command:  ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’.” Galatians 5:13-14. (NLT) This is what it means to live under grace, and it is by God’s grace that we are free.  We are free from the penalty of sin and free from the burden of guilt.  We are free to serve, free to love, and free to live for Christ.  What kind of “freedom” would we have if we were still expected to fulfill the requirements of the Law (something we know is impossible) in order to receive our salvation?  None! Peter spoke clearly on this subject while addressing the council at Jerusalem, “Now then, why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear?  No!  We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.” Acts 15:10-11. 

 

           We have the promise of God that by our faith in Christ, we have been cleansed, now and forever, from all unrighteousness.  By the grace of God, we are free from the requirements of the Law for salvation because we have already been declared righteous by our faith in Jesus Christ and are free to live by the power of His Holy Spirit!  “But now we have been released from the law, for we died with Christ, and we are no longer captive to its power.  Now we can really serve God, not in the old way by obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way, by the Spirit.” Romans 7:6. (NLT)

 

           “With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith.  We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12.