STANDFAST IN THE LIBERTY, JULY 3, 2010

On July 4th we celebrate the United States founding, marking the day in 1776 that the Continental Congress formally adopted the Declaration of Independence which declared our independence from Great Britain.

I believe this day should not only be a national holiday celebrating the United States of America’s independence but I think just as importantly we Christians  should also celebrate the liberty we have in Christ Jesus.

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 1, JULY 3, 2010

Paul tells us to “stand fast” in our liberty in Christ Jesus which means we are to persevere, stand firm and hold our ground.  Just as America or any other country must preserve in order to maintain freedom and protection of its rights, so we Christians must stand fast in protecting our spiritual freedom.  “Standing fast” also reveals our freedom in Christ doesn’t function automatically.  We each have a part to play.  Legalism is the devils’ greatest weapon and so we must resist every attempt of our enemy to draw us back into self effort.

Just before this passage Paul had compared being under the law to being a descendant of the slave woman, Hagar, and therefore not an heir of the promises of God.  Not one of us wants to be cast out from the inheritance of God so we need to steadfastly defend our liberty which we have received through faith in Christ.

This liberty Paul was speaking of was freedom from the oppression of the Old Testament law.  Paul makes it clear in verses 13-15 this liberty is not freedom to sin but freedom from sin.

Paul used the word “entangled”.  We are to be no longer entangled with the law’s demands in which we are trying to find God’s favor or God’s acceptance through our performance.

The “yoke of bondage” is the Old Testament law.  This leaves us no doubt that the law was not for the purpose of liberty but bondage.

If we trust in any religious act (circumcision, water baptism, holiness) except Christ they all void the saving effects of Christ in our lives.

There is a simple way to detect what our faith is in by simply imagining standing before God and giving God the reason why we should be allowed into heaven.  If our answer is our church attendance, our giving, our acts of holiness or any other thing, then those are what our faith is in.  We would be no different from any other religion who is trying to work their way to heaven and trying to please God.  We would be trusting in our own efforts to produce salvation and the favor of God.

So the only answer we could give that would make us worthy to enter into heaven would be what Jesus did for us.  It has to be our total faith and our total trust in Jesus.  It can’t be Jesus and something else.

Rom 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. KJV

Let’s celebrate our new spiritual birth that comes only by Christ that meant we are no longer separated from God by our sins.  We could not produce this spiritual rebirth for we are totally incapable of saving ourselves and therefore we need a Savior, the only true Savior Jesus Christ.

Rom 3:23-24 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: KJV

Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.KJV

Rom 7:9-11 Once I was alive, but quite apart from and unconscious of the Law. But when the commandment came, sin lived again and I died (was sentenced by the Law to death).10 And the very legal ordinance which was designed and intended to bring life actually proved [to mean to me] death. 11 For sin, seizing the opportunity and getting a hold on me [by taking its incentive] from the commandment, beguiled and entrapped and cheated me, and using it [as a weapon], killed me. AMP

Eph 2:1,5-10 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;5 Even when we were dead (slain) by [our own] shortcomings and trespasses, He made us alive together in fellowship and in union with Christ; [He gave us the very life of Christ Himself, the same new life with which He quickened Him, for] it is by grace (His favor and mercy which you did not deserve) that you are saved   (delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ’s salvation).6 And He raised us up together with Him and made us sit down together [giving us joint seating with Him] in the heavenly sphere [by virtue of our being] in Christ Jesus (the Messiah, the Anointed One).7 He did this that He might clearly demonstrate through the ages to come the immeasurable (limitless, surpassing) riches of His free grace (His unmerited favor) in [His] kindness and goodness of heart toward us in Christ Jesus.8 For it is by free grace (God’s unmerited favor) that you are saved ( delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ’s salvation) through [your] faith. And this [salvation] is not of yourselves [of your own doing, it came not through your own striving], but it is the gift of God;9 Not because of works [not the fulfillment of the Law’s demands], lest any man should boast. [It is not the result of what anyone can possibly do, so no one can pride himself in it or take glory to himself.]10 For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live]. AMP

We simply believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and we are saved, delivered from the judgment of God for our sins.  And it is the same when it comes to the favor of God, it can’t be earned through anything we could ever do but God’s favor only comes by one Man, Jesus Christ, by His finished work at Calvary for us.

If you have not yet received Jesus as your Savior and Lord and want to receive this new birth right now, here is a simple prayer you can pray:  Father God, I am a sinner. I repent of sin.  I ask you to forgive me of my sins and cleanse me with the blood of Jesus from all sins.  Come into my heart Lord Jesus Christ.  I give you my life.  I receive you as my Father, my Savior and my Lord.  Amen.

If you have any questions about what you have just done or if you still are not sure of your salvation, please go to this link:  http://www.godswordalive.com/article_pages/going_to_heaven.html

Let me know if you prayed this prayer.  Thanks.

STAND FAST IN THE LIBERTY 4,  JULY 3, 2010STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 1A, JULY 3, 2010

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 2, JULY 3, 2010

1 Peter 2:9-10 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. KJV
STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 3, JULY 3, 2010

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. KJV

Col 1:12-13 Giving thanks to the Father, Who has qualified and made us fit to share the portion which is the inheritance of the saints (God’s holy people) in the Light.13[The Father] has delivered and  drawn us to Himself out of the control and the dominion of darkness and has transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, AMP

Heb 12:23 And to the church (assembly) of the Firstborn who are registered [as citizens] in heaven, AMP

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 4, JULY 3, 2010

Rom 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus  KJV

Rom 8:1-2 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. KJV

2 Cor 5:17-19Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!18 But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself]…19 It was God [personally present] in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor).  AMP

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 5, JULY 3, 2010

Rom 6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. KJV

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 6, JULY 3, 2010

2 Cor 5:16-17 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. KJV

Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 7, JULY 3, 2010

Eph 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:KJV

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 8, JULY 3, 2010

Heb 4:16 Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]. AMP

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 9, JULY 3, 2010

1 Cor 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? KJV

Acts 9:31 Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, KJV
STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 10, JULY 3, 2010

Eph 2:4 But God — so rich is He in His mercy! Because of and in order to satisfy the great and wonderful and intense love with which He loved us… AMP

Rom 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. KJV

2 Peter 1:2 May grace (God’s favor) and peace (which is perfect well-being, all necessary good, all spiritual prosperity, and freedom from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts) be multiplied to you in [the full, personal, precise, and correct] knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. AMP

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 11, JULY 3, 2010

Heb 1:14 Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? KJV

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 12, JULY 3, 2010

Isa 53:4-5 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.KJV

1 Peter 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. KJV

STAND FAST SCRIPTURE 13, JULY 3, 2010

Matt 10:7-8 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. KJV

Let’s remember from this day forth to celebrate Jesus:

Philem 6 That the communication of thy faith may become effectual by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus. KJV

After you have read this blog, you need to listen to my audio, “The Reality of the Word of God”.  You can download the PDF transcription to study with the audio.