Grace and Freedom

Evidence of a real love for Christ

2 min

Law and Love

There are churches that send out the message: “Don’t let anyone tell you that you are under the Law. You are not obligated to keep commandments because you are under grace. You have freedom in Christ.” They may cite Romans 6:14, “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under law, but under grace.” Some are teaching that if you really love Jesus, you are under no obligation to keep the commandments. Yet Christ Himself said: “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). Thus, we make a critical mistake when we fail to see that keeping the commands is evidence of a real love for Christ.

Understanding Freedom in Christ

Here is a helpful way to look at freedom and liberty and what it means to be under grace: Freedom in Christ is not freedom to sin. Freedom in Christ is freedom from sin. Carefully examine the following four passages and then ask yourself: Is grace freedom to sin, or is grace freedom from sin?

  • Romans 6:1–2 “. . . Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid.”
  • Galatians 5:13 “For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.”
  • I Peter 2:16 “[Live] as free, and not using your liberty for a cloke [cloak] of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.”
  • Jude 1:4 “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Is there any indication in these passages on grace and freedom that God did not expect us to be obedient to His commands?

Faithfulness to the Groom

Worldliness has gutted many churches. Young people who should know better are being unfaithful to their Groom. “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” (James 4:4). I long for God to once again stir the hearts of many, many young people into a passionate commitment to holiness before the Lord. Holiness is a beautiful thing, especially when it is seen in the life of a young person. A heart given to holiness, not legalism, keeps God’s commands.

A heart given to holiness, not legalism, keeps God’s commands.

It is possible for people to keep God’s commandments without being truly spiritual or really righteous. Yet to keep commandments without sincerity, or by the persuasive force of Christian community, means to distort true spirituality. Only by Scriptural holiness can anyone keep the commandments of Christ.

Written by Ken Pierpont

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