Talk about another thing being badly skewed; faith without works.
Talk about another thing being badly skewed; faith without works.
This is another part of an ongoing article by my friend Art Licursi.
Part 5 of 10 – “The Law” Empowers the Sin Nature
I believe by now in this series we’ve established that “Sin” as a personality and nature that indwells “the flesh” body of all men SO long as they live on earth – both the saved and the unsaved.
Let’s now look more closely at the response of the “Sin-nature” when we attempt to live under “the Law” during this day of the “dispensation of the grace of God.” Paul plainly states below that the activating force behind “Sin in the flesh” (Rom 8:3), giving its power, is “the Law.” This is the case for anyone who is trying to live under “the Law.”
1 Corinthians 15:56 … the STRENGTH (dunamis, power) OF SIN is THE LAW.
These verses here below are from Romans 7 where Paul describes the dilemma of a man trying to live righteously while living under or according to “the Law.” Note the repeated linkage between “the commandment” (the Law) and the “Sin” nature; it’s undeniable.
Romans 7:8 But SIN taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence (illicit desires). For without the law sin was dead.
9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
11 For SIN, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But SIN, that it might appear sin, WORKING DEATH IN ME by that which is good; (so) that SIN by THE COMMANDMENT might become exceeding sinful.
In these verses it certainly sounds like “Sin” is a personality, when we read of “SIN taking occasion,” deceiving,” and “working” (verses 8, 11, and 13). “Sin” sounds like a personality with a consciousness that acts and reacts in the believer who weighs his self-worth by his self-effort to conform to “the Law.”
In Galatians Paul explains the matter of “the Law’s” impotence to contribute to genuine righteous living. Paul reveals how “the Law” is intended to make men see their absolute need to trust Christ for their righteous standing and His life for living righteously. If we live by the law we bear “the curse,” which is the requirement too then keep ALL the law.
Galatians 3:10 For AS MANY AS ARE OF THE WORKS OF THE LAW (THOSE WHO DEPEND UPON THE LAW) ARE UNDER THE CURSE: for it is written, CURSED IS EVERY ONE THAT CONTINUETH NOT IN ALL THINGS WHICH ARE WRITTEN IN THE BOOK OF THE LAW TO DO THEM.
Also in Galatians 3 Paul explains how “the Law” acts as a “schoolmaster” for the unbeliever in pushing Him to Christ, and that after faith (in Christ) has come to that person then they are no longer under “the Law.”
Galatians 3:22-26 But the scripture hath concluded all (men are) under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. 23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. 26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
Note from verse 23 that “before faith came, we were kept under the law,” and in verse 24 we see that “the Law” was as our “schoolmaster” to teach us our need of Christ – to “bring us unto Christ (in faith).” And then, “after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster” (verse 25). So after the condemnation of “the Law” does its job – to push us to trust Christ as our only righteousness.
It’s impossible for any human, except Jesus. Hebrews 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but (JESUS) WAS IN ALL POINTS TEMPTED LIKE AS WE ARE, YET WITHOUT SIN. The burden of this curse is upon those who think we are still under “the Law.” Our failure under “The Law” is intended to reveal to us our utter need of a capable righteous life, to push us to receive Christ and His righteous “Spirit of life,” whereby we are not under “the Law.” Romans 6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for (because) YE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW, BUT UNDER GRACE.
Thankfully we were never meant to keep the external dead “Law of Moses,” which was fittingly written on lifeless stone. It has no power except to reveal our Sin to us. Now under grace, “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth” (Romans 10:4). The believer’s worth and righteousness is not based on their performance, neither before nor after they are converted by faith in Christ as their Savior.
We as grace believers live under an entirely new paradigm in this age of “the dispensation of the grace of God” (Eph 3:2); it’s a new way of living. We are not under any external “law” (except man’s civil law), thus we enjoy that now we are under “no condemnation” (Rom 8:1 below).
Romans 8:1-2 THERE IS THEREFORE NOW NO CONDEMNATION TO THEM WHICH ARE IN CHRIST JESUS,
Nevertheless, we do have within our spirit “the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” to regulate us now from within. This new way of inner regulation is the living “law of the Sprit of life in Christ Jesus.”
2 For THE LAW (operative regulating power) OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS HATH MADE ME FREE FROM THE LAW (operative regulating power) OF SIN AND DEATH.
As recipients of Christ’s “Spirit of life” are free to live spontaneously. Nevertheless, we have His permanent presence within us to guide and regulate us by either His prompting or restricting. Here we see a couple examples of the Lord’s inner prompting and restricting in the life of Paul and his co-workers.
Acts 18:5 And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ.
Acts 16:6-7 6 Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia, 7 After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the Spirit suffered them not.
We can learn to practice the presence of the Lord, to trusting Him to guide us. Actually, we must learn to follow the inner sense we have by His “Spirit of life” within us. Paul writes in Ephesians 4:20 But ye have not so learned Christ; Christ will guide us in all our doings; e.g., He will lead or restrict us in what or if we should buy some particular thing that we are considering; or, He may move us to change lanes on the highway, etc. He is ever-present in us and desires to be the Lord of our life in every aspect.
There’s just so much that is totally bang on here in what John is sharing regarding those who see the need to try and add something to the unabashed wildness of the Father’s amazing grace.
If we start out with a fear based perspective viewing anything that is recorded within the scriptures in the bible, guaranteed you’re going to make it mean what you want it to mean, there is NO deviation permitted. Thing is, the “letter kills” but the spirit makes the letter “come alive” beyond just printed words on a page
I am looking at what God the Father did from before the foundations of the earth by opening a door that no man can shut; Jesus, being God’s lamb slain before the foundations of the earth made it possible for man to fully enter into the fullness of what the Father, Son and Spirit operated in.
It says that it was God in Christ reconciling the world back unto himself, no longer holding man’s trespasses against them. So, in the finished work of God in Christ, does the reconciliation that was perfectly worked out by God from before space, time, and history as well as it being consummated within space, time, and history mean that everyone is no longer in the first Adam but are now in the “last Adam-Christ Jesus”?
My question ties into the demarcations that many have been hog-tied to, that being Jews and Gentiles, but from the scriptures those demarcations have been removed, the language being this, either being in Christ or still being in Adam.
After reading this, I couldn’t resist sharing it here, as it profoundly massages my soul with deep and lasting joy and comfort.
Rich I haven’t listened to this particular pod cast but will do today on my journey to work.
On these early spring days, this story Kevin Kling told us is a fine way to kick off the week:
“Back in the days when pots and pans could talk, which indeed they still do, there lived a man. And in order to have water, every day he had to walk down the hill and fill two pots and walk them home.
One day, it was discovered one of the pots had a crack, and as time went on, the crack widened. Finally, the pot turned to the man and said, ‘You know, every day you take me to the river, and by the time you get home, half of the water’s leaked out. Please replace me with a better pot.’
And the man said, ‘You don’t understand. As you spill, you water the wild flowers by the side of the path.’ And sure enough, on the side of the path where the cracked pot was carried, beautiful flowers grew, while other side was barren.
‘I think I’ll keep you,’ said the man.
I hope that header wasn’t too fowl!
Another wild and crazy day whether wise here in Ontario, but then it just adds to the unnatural and strangely mild winter we’re coming out of. Actually I’m convinced we’re a moth ahead than the actual month, this is much more like April than March.
Walking home tonight after work I bumped into a fellow who was sitting on one of the many benches all around the river, as I was approaching him I could see that he was taking some pictures, he had this huge telephoto lens, one of the longest and biggest I have ever seen. We struck up a conversation about photography and sharing stories of our adventures in picture taking, I mentioned to him that my wife and I were heading out this weekend to attend a Wings of Spring Waterfowl Migration Festival, along with a Bird of prey exhibit. He was somewhat familiar with the location I mentioned and said that he was going to do his best to be there as well, birds of a feather really do flock together.
He shared with me that his love for photography was something that came about without any real planning, he went on to say that as cool as it was in taking pictures he loved how this journey turned into something so much more. Going into places he never dreamed of going to before. It truly amazes me how a simple questioned turned into something far bigger and greater than his answer, but I am finding life is like that more and more.
It’s my hope seeing as how the whether is going to be very much on the plus side, I’m going to be taking many, many pictures I will share here later.
The picture I’ve used along with this blog entry was one I took this year on January 14th. I was so blown away over it all, as far as I know at least for me and I’m pretty sure for most of the folks who have lived here in Stratford way longer than we have, have never seen a Bald Eagle before paying a visit.
The gentleman I met is Michael Dean, you can view some of his work here.