14 November 2013

Free to Obey God

Photo: GTY
The very purpose of grace is to free us from sin—"so we too might walk in newness of life" (Romans 6:4). Grace is much more than mere forgiveness for our sins, or a free ride to heaven. Grace certainly does not leave us under sin's dominion. Saved by grace, "we are [God's own] workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:10). Grace "[instructs] us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age" (Titus 2:12). This is the very reason Christ gave Himself for us: "That He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds" (Titus 2:14).

Yet it seems there have always been those who have corrupted the grace of God by turning it into lasciviousness (Jude v. 4). They characterize grace as total freedom, but they themselves are enslaved to corruption (2 Peter 2:19). Thus they nullify the grace of God (Galatians 2:21).

"The true grace of God" (1 Peter 5:12) does not offer freedom from moral restraint. Grace is no sanction for sin. On the contrary, it grants the believer freedom from sin. It frees us from the law and from sin's penalty, but it also liberates us from sin's absolute control. It frees us to obey God.

– John MacArthur, The Truth About Grace, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2012), 92–93.

Further Reading
If Not for Amazing Grace
Affirming Sola Scriptura
Lydia's Conversion and God's Irresistible Grace

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