FREEDOM AND GRACE
Freedom in Christ results from not being oppressed in bondage. The Bible points out that mankind lacks true freedom because of sin in their lives. God has always delivered His people from bondage, throughout The Bible.
Most of God's acts in The Old Testament are examples of His deliverance for His people. All of these divine acts prepared the way for the Salvation work of Jesus Christ in The New Testament.
Jesus Christ has bought freedom from the power of sin and of the Old Covenant Law.
God's purpose has always been to bring about deliverance for His people. He sets them free to serve Him, to be holy, set apart and to receive His promised gifts.
The Old Testament pointed ahead to the greater freedom in the promised deliverer. Prophecies were predicted through the prophets down through the centuries, of a redemptive Saviour. Jesus fulfilled all the prophet's prediction as the Saviour.
The redemption of the exodus from Egypt was a shadow of the redemptive work achieved by Jesus Christ, the Saviour of Mankind.
Jesus Christ was the promised deliverer to set His people free from sin and the effects of sin. Jesus Christ made available to believers the freedom from the penalty of sin, from the fear of death, from the spiritual death that accompanies the 'wages' of sin, from the power of sin and from the power of temptation from the devil. Only God has the power to deliver mankind from any type of bondage. Believers will be delivered finally and completely from the presence of sin.
Freedom is being rescued by Jesus Christ. Through The Holy Spirit, those who are disciples of Christ are able to obediently fulfil any Law according to God's intentions and purposes.
The freedom of Christ's followers comes from the Blood of Jesus Christ, God's unconditional Love and the power of The Holy Spirit.
Believers are set free from the Law, from the ordinances of the Law and from the curse of the Law. Jesus' perfect obedience fulfilled all of God's requirements of the Law.
His death fulfilled the demands of the Law and because of His death on The Cross, believers are righteously independent of the Law and its accusing condemnation.
Although Christians have been set free from condemnation by God, obedience to Him is still an obligation and responsibility. Many Christians fail to take the responsibilities towards God seriously.
Some Christians think they can knowingly sin and abuse God's grace in expecting forgiveness without repentance, this type of Christian becomes a stumbling block to others, of which there is a penalty.
As all humans do, Christians also indulge themselves and willingly fall back into breaking moral laws, deliberately being disobedient to the commandments of God. This is selfishness, which is to worship self- interest.
God has given humans the freedom of will. People, however forfeit their freedom through abuse of their own free will.
The Bible explains that people are confronted with three choices, good, evil and the choice of the command to choose good, which is to choose life. Deuteronomy 30:19 " ...I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life,...."
There are limitations that hinder human action through the enslaving power of sin. Sin need not enslave believers, they need to resist the temptation to sin with the help and strength of The Holy Spirit.
Offenses caused by mankind prevent them from breaking free from bondage. Vices harden the heart, as well as people doing so themselves. God has given mankind the will to seek and find truth. Only through Jesus can humans be free from the bondage and slavery to sin.
God makes His grace known to individuals and it is expressed in covenant relationships. There is nothing human beings can do to free themselves except to receive God's undeserved mercy. The Christian's life is totally dependent upon the grace of God. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit demonstrate grace for the freedom of believers.
Grace compensates for the weaknesses in humans. Christians are free to serve God only by His grace. His grace is shown in His readiness to forgive.
By Grace are believers free to voluntarily obey God's commandments and principles. Believers have an ongoing experience of God's grace that requires the co-operation of each believer.
A Christian's speech and conduct are to be judged by the Law of Freedom. Freedom in Christ must include love and self-preservation, allowing for the Christian's conscience before God and individual Judgement.
Christians enjoy freedom from the sacrificial offerings of the Old Covenant. There is also freedom to go before God's throne of grace, to worship Him without going through a legalised priesthood as in the Mosaic Law.
The spiritual liberty found in Christ must be valued and guarded for it is the offer concerning fullness of life.
|SCRIPTURES John 1: 14-17, 8:34-36,
Romans 7:14-20, Galatians 4:4,5.
QUESTIONS 1] How did Jesus Christ set believers free from the Law of the Old Covenant? 2] Does sin have to enslave believers? 3] How does the human will effect freedom in Christ? 4] How has God's promise of Grace been fulfilled in Jesus Christ?
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