God's Message Stands Firm (2)

  • We ended part one of this teaching with the following:

    "23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.

    Notice it is a past tense statement when it says “everyone HAS sinned”. The KJV says “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. Religious legalists like to take this verse and throw it in your face saying we are all sinners. No we’re not. The verse doesn’t say that. All through Romans, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and on through Revelation, scripture declares the exact opposite. We are set free from sin, death, hell and the grave. We are not sinners, but righteous through Christ Jesus. How can I say that? Easy! Just look at the next verse. It’s one of many that declare this.

    24 Yet God freely and graciously DECLARES that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.

    Come on. Show me where I’ve got this wrong. Just make sure you give me scripture to make your point. Don’t give your false opinion that is a result of false teaching through religion and legalism. Get set free from that bondage."

    With that introduction, lets move on in Romans 3:25 and following with part two and more truth about our righteousness.

    25 For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past.

    Who did God present as the sacrifice for sin? JESUS!!! Not you or me. How are people made right? “When they believe that Jesus sacrificed His life, shedding His blood.” Now if you disagree, take it up with God the Holy Spirit. He inspired Paul to write this and it is God that stands firm.

    26 for He was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate His righteousness, for He Himself is fair and just, and He declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.

    Whoa!!! God did all this because He was looking ahead to “this present time”. “HE declares “sinners” to be right in His sight when they believe in Jesus. It’s not important that religious leaders see me as right or declare that I’m not right. It’s only important that God sees me right in His sight, and He does when I believe in His Son. That’s it. It’s all about believing. It’s unbelief that will keep you from entering into His rest. Wanting others to think or see you as right based on their standards is unbelief.

    I like this statement. “As long as you need other people to understand you and to approve of what you are doing, you will be owned by anyone willing to lie about you or to you. Excessive need for support from others or from without is proof of the bankruptcy of your beliefs.”

    27 Can we boast, then, that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law. It is based on faith. 28 So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.

    Here God says “just in case you didn’t understand what I said in verse 27, let me make it real clear for you.

    29 After all, is God the God of the Jews only? Isn’t he also the God of the Gentiles? Of course He is. 30 There is only one God, and he makes people right with himself only by faith, whether they are Jews or Gentiles. 31 Well then, if we emphasize faith, does this mean that we can forget about the law? Of course not! In fact, only when we have faith do we truly fulfill the law.

    Wait…What? When we have faith we TRULY fulfill the law? Yep. That’s what it says.

    I like to shock people by telling them that I fulfill all the law. Of course they begin to pick up their rocks ready to stone me as an heretic. But, Jesus said in Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them”. Said another way, He came to give FULL meaning to the law of Moses.

    So, according to all the truth we have put in this teaching, when we BELIEVE in Jesus we are made right. We are given all authority when we believe. We are in Christ Jesus and He is in us. We have the same power that Jesus was given by the Father, therefore in Christ Jesus I fulfill all the law.

    Paul explains the fulfillment of the law more clearly and thoroughly in Colossians 2:16-23.

    16 So don’t let anyone make rules for you about eating and drinking or about Jewish customs (festivals, New Moon celebrations, or Sabbath days).

    Don’t let anyone should on you. Don’t let them tell you you have to or need to. Don’t listen to people who would put you in bondage to legalism and performance.

    17 In the past these things were like a shadow that showed what was coming. But the new things that were coming are found in Christ.

    This is just another way of saying what was said in Romans 3:20 “For no one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands. The law simply shows us how sinful we are”.

    This is further confirmed in verse in Romans 3:27 “Can we boast, then, that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law. It is based on faith”.

    18 Some people enjoy acting as if they are humble and love to worship angels. They always talk about the visions they have seen. Don’t listen to them when they say you are wrong because you don’t do these things. It is so foolish for them to feel such pride, because it is all based on their own human ideas. 19 They don’t keep themselves under the control of the head. Christ is the head, and the whole body depends on him. Because of Christ all the parts of the body care for each other and help each other. So the body is made stronger and held together as God causes it to grow. 20 You died with Christ and were made free from the powers that influence this world. So why do you act as if you still belong to the world? I mean, why do you follow rules like these: 21 “Don’t eat this,” “Don’t taste that,” “Don’t touch that”? 22 These rules are talking about earthly things that are gone after they are used. They are only human commands and teachings. 23 These rules may seem to be wise as part of a made-up religion in which people pretend to be humble and punish their bodies. But they don’t help people stop doing the evil that the sinful self wants to do.

    There is such a strong temptation in the life of a religious person to make their relation to God judicial instead of personal. Judicial meaning “interprets and applies the law or man-made rules and regulations”.

    Every act of sin results from your mistrust and unbelief in His love and grace for you. So, when you try to keep a set of rules or adhere to a religious program man has created, in order to avoid sin, it in effect causes you to enter into sin through mistrust and unbelief. Again sin is simply missing the mark and the mark is the goodness and grace of God.

    As you grow in loving Him you will find yourself increasingly free from sin. For most people, learning to live that way is difficult because it’s completely different from anything they’ve been taught. As we learn to live with Him, we get to cooperate with what He is doing.

    It’s your choice. You can continue to struggle trying to perform and live up to a set of unreachable standards that man, religious institutions, or false teachers have set up for you. You’ll drive yourself crazy trying and burn out. Or, on the other hand, you can receive everything Jesus purchased for you at Calvary by simply believing in Him. You can then rest in the assurance of all God says is yours.

    God will always let you have choice. He will let you have your own way, not to spoil you. He will let you have your own way to reveal to you what it is that’s destroying you.

    Remember, listen very carefully to the truth you have heard, or you may drift away from it. God freely and graciously DECLARES that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. Don’t forget how this teaching started and remember that “God’s Message Stands Firm”.

    Grace and Peace.