The True Grace of Romans 6

The True Grace of Romans 6

“For sin shall not have dominion over you:
for ye are not under the law, but under grace”
Romans 6:14

The validity of grace received is revealed in our freedom from sin. Sin is not to have dominion over us because of the ministration of Grace. The teaching of grace apart from its liberating power is the lie and the falsity of the modern day gospel.

“Sin shall NOT have dominion over you”

When we disconnect the teaching of grace from the substance of Grace we live and perpetuate a lie. Grace is not a sentiment. It is the power of God entering into the human heart, with divine enablement to grow into the very righteousness of God in Christ.

Paul follows this verse with:

“What then? shall we sin,
because we are not under the law,
but under grace? God forbid”
Romans 6:15

Our need for the power of grace is directly proportional to the desire of our hearts to walk and live in the righteousness of God. In the presentation of grace as a sentiment we rob ourselves of the need to be “under” grace! To be “under grace” means we are in submission to its influence and its sphere of power. “Under” speaks of the government and ruler-ship of Grace. We are called to a Kingdom of grace in which His Life rules over the unruly horror of the unredeemed human heart.

Paul continues…

“Don’t you know that when you present yourselves as servants and obey someone, you are the servants of whomever you obey; whether of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness?”
Romans 6:16

May the Lord help us to lay hold of this truth: Obedience is the revelation of whom we serve. If we obey the promptings and the voice of the Spirit of Grace, we yield ourselves unto righteousness. Let His word penetrate our hearts; “you are the servants of whomever you obey”! This is the contextual truth of Grace. If I obey sin it is unto death; if I obey Him, I am growing unto righteousness. How clear and powerful is the presentation of grace and righteousness.

Paul continues…

“But thanks be to God, that, whereas you were bondservants of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were delivered”
Romans 6:17

Teaching without obedience is powerless, impotent and deceptive.

They who speak of grace apart from obedience present a false gospel or, as Paul would call it, “another gospel”. The feeble and ineffective living in our day is directly related to the teaching of a grace without power, a salvation without righteousness and a substandard of living. These things are actually supported and encouraged by the false representation of grace in our day.

Paul continues…

“Being made free from sin,
you became bondservants of righteousness”
Romans 6:18

We can only truly walk in righteousness as we are MADE free from sin! Grace is given to bring the life of the true believer into the beauty of a slavery unto righteousness. As we were all slaves to the power of sin and its ministration of death, even now, by the power of grace, we are made servants of righteousness! May we receive this grace anew and find faith to come “under” its dominion. May all who proclaim the true grace of God begin to walk in the power of its ministration.

Woe to those who speak of a grace which allows
them to live under the dominion of sin.

Woe unto those who use grace as a cloak
to hold onto the pleasures of sin.

Woe unto those who present a gospel
which allows for sin and disobedience.

Blessings upon those who know
in the depths of their hearts
that there is a provision to live victoriously
in Christ because of His Grace.

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – John Milton

Quote for Today

“Though all the winds of doctrine were let loose to play upon the earth, so Truth be in the field, we do injuriously by licensing and prohibiting to misdoubt her strength. Let her and Falsehood grapple; who ever knew Truth put to the worse, in a free and open encounter”
– John Milton

Quote for Today – A.W. Tozer

Quote for Today

“If I see aright, the cross of popular evangelicalism is not the cross of the New Testament. It is, rather, a new bright ornament upon the bosom of a self-assured and carnal Christianity. The old cross slew men, the new cross entertains them. The old cross condemned; the new cross amuses. The old cross destroyed confidence in the flesh; the new cross encourages it”
– A. W. Tozer

The Cross of Christ

The Cross of Christ

“Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus,
that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.”
2 Corinthians 4:10

The call and purpose of God in Christ Jesus is to the end that we become an expression of the life and wonder of Jesus. Our interaction with the Holy Spirit is about the “manifestation” of His Life in us. He alone is to be the fulcrum upon which our life is lived. God’s singular focus is the glorifying of the Son; as our hearts become aligned by the power of the Holy Spirit we are caught up in this grand purpose. The signature of a life lived in the grace of God will be summed up by the cry:

“He must increase; I must decrease”

There is a hidden dynamic of life available within the confines of the Cross of Christ. A life of resurrection awaits those who would enter into the reality of discipleship. There is but one avenue of advance; one door, one key and one price for the surpassing glory of His Life being manifested in us: a dying to self. It is here that even the call to ministry must be refined within the consuming fire of God until its sole purpose is to manifest His life at the cost of our own. The pathway is littered with many who have started out well only to become enamoured by their own expressions of ministry and the adulation of others. How perilous is this way and how deceptive the human heart is at every juncture in our journey!

His ministration subtly becomes “our” ministry. The people we minister to become “our fellowship” and “our church”. The dregs of fallen Adam usurp the blessings of Christ. It is one thing to start out well but few there be that end well. The safeguard is to remain faithful to the truth; speak truth, live truth and identify with Him who is the truth. Relationships must be subservient to the truth. It is here that the weight and the power of the Cross is revealed. Popularity and acceptance are virulent enemies of the cross and the human heart is susceptible to both. Paul presented this vital truth in the Book of Galatians:

“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed”
Galatians 1:8

Paul himself made it clear that his standing with the people of God in his day was founded on him being held within the truth of God and not in the office of his apostleship. Every ministration of God which causes schisms, division and a calling of people unto themselves, “their” church or fellowship, is an affront to the person and the lordship of Jesus Christ.

Only those who are living daily unto this ONE end will know of the wonder, the power and the excellency of the glory of the Resurrected Christ!

“He MUST increase,
and I must decrease”
John 3:30

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – CR Oliver

Quote for Today

“The church is to declare the grace and power of God to the heavens, where the gates of hell cannot prevail against it! Paul is not describing a symbol; he is describing what God expects to see when His people are viewed – clothed and standing, ready for battle.

It is time to marshal the troops; it is time to fall into ranks and be determined to win. When one sings the old song, “Onward Christian Soldiers, marching out to war, with the cross of Jesus going on before,” he or she is not speaking about a symbol but an occupation. We need to be that kind of Christian soldier, fighting back against the field of moral and spiritual degradation that rises against all that we believe. Instead, the church acquiesces, sleeping with the enemy, hoping all will turn out well”
– C.R. Oliver

Intercession – Neglect It Not

Intercession

Neglect it Not

“Neglect not the gift that is in thee…”
1 Timothy 4:14

Being that each of God’s own is gifted for and called to a specific purpose, to neglect exercising said giftings and callings is in large part to neglect one’s walk with God. To neglect a known spiritual gifting is to deny the Lord’s goodness, and to neglect a known calling is to walk without faith.

The giftings and callings of God are irrevocable (Rom 11:29), and they carry with them great necessity to be continually walked in; so great that, if once their fruits have been even a little tasted, yet then they are not exercised, their knowledge haunts and condemns in heart the one to whom they are given: and though he still walk with God somewhat, he renders himself a less honorable servant, and knows it.

And this is especially the case with the man who is called particularly to intercession (in prayer and/or in deed); for the nature of his gifts and calling are a burden in themselves: therefore the neglecting of them amidst the bitterness of this earthly life is double the burden – and that without the assurance of hope or any inward joy.

This more than any other spiritual calling is to be likened to the laboring of childbirth: the child must be born, if it is not already concieved. The inward secret cry of the one whom the Lord has so burdened ever cries with Rachel, “Give me children, or else I die!” (Genesis 30:1). And the heart which has learned purity of intercession does not seek to fulfill its desire according to the flesh, as Rachel did at first; but rather persists for the heavenly gift as Hannah did, and likewise dedicates the fruit of its victory to the Lord (1Samuel 1).

Intercession is the most blessed calling of the whole of Christ’s body on behalf of its every member. It is for some members to bear in heavier ways than others; but it is still to a degree for all, in the simplicity of the giving of oneself for the good of another.

“For I want you to know what a great conflict [Gk. ἀγών: “race, contest, agony”] I have for you…
Colossians 2:1 (NKJV)

“For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, having the same conflict [Gk. ἀγών] which you saw in me and now hear is in me”
Philippians 1:29-31 (NKJV)

Timothy Brendan

I have the privilege of knowing this young man personally. His growth in the grace and the knowledge of the Lord is a source of true blessing to me.

The Way into Life

The Way into Life

“Holding the mystery of the faith
in a pure conscience”
1 Timothy 3:9

The conscience is a great gift of God to us. It is the vital link between the human soul and God’s Spirit. The deeper an individual goes in their relationship with God the greater will be the diligence required to keep one’s conscience pure and clean before God. Foolish is the one who thinks they can ignore the voice of God within and still grow in their understanding of the mystery and wonder of God in their own life. If we have wronged a brother or sister and do not seek to rectify the situation, let us not be deceived into thinking our life in God will prosper! The conscience is the sounding board in our walk with God. Those who truly seek to know Him must ever be sensitive to this inward light of God. An obedient heart keeps the conscience clean. When there is a disturbance in the conscience, true men and women of faith will do all in their power to keep this mirror of God clean.

“Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart,
and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned
1 Timothy 1:5

They who defile their conscience and yet seek to portray faith and godliness walk in the hypocrisy of religion. Their faith is not genuine, and the defilement of the conscience contaminates their relationship with God. A pure heart is one which is ever cognizant of the status of the conscience.

“If therefore you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift”
Matthew 5:23-24

Supposing we can worship God in truth while allowing offences to remain unattended is the horror of religion. Such worship is carnal, hypocritical and unacceptable before God. The true heart will respond to the inner voice of the conscience. It requires an intensity of heart to walk in the truth of these things. It requires humility to seek out our brother and sister in order to obey God within the sanctum of our own hearts.

“First be reconciled to your brother” *

How little we comprehend the fact that our relationship with our brother is paramount to our relationship with God. We are the Body of Christ and if I set my brother at aught, in God’s eyes I am doing it unto Him. The growth of any individual in God will be measured by the sensitivity of our responses to this Holy gift of God in us. People may sear and desensitize their conscience by misusing the doctrines of grace. Make no mistake; those who do not obey the conscience will end up in an unfruitful and shipwrecked life, and a darkness from which there is no escape.

A few years ago, I came to understand a simple truth:

“Those who refuse to deal with their past,
will have no future growth in God”

Spiritual Stagnancy is the fruit of disobedience. 

We cannot ignore the voice of God in our conscience and expect His mercies to lead us on into a greater knowing of Him. The life of a true disciple in Christ is one of continual transactions with Him who is true. My sensitivity today is the door through which I enter into the New Things He has for me.

“forgive us our debts AS we also forgive our debtors”
Matthew 6:9

May God make known to us the simplicity of this truth. We may hold on to the doctrines of our forgiveness in God; in reality we are forgiven to the same extent that we forgive others! Forgiveness, like all the precious gifts of God, requires our participation. As with forgiveness, so is mercy… “Blessed are the merciful for they shall OBTAIN mercy”. The religion of men requires no real cost; we can defile our conscience with the very truths of God and somehow think we are in right standing with Him! (Please read the full context of Matthew 5:23-24).

There is a cost but also a great blessing associated with the keeping of a clear conscience. True disciples know the benefits of walking in the Way of Truth. Such things are not optional for those who desire to know Him in Spirit and in Truth.

“And herein do I exercise myself,
to have always a conscience void of offence
toward God,
 and toward men”
Acts 24:16
* Note: There will be instances where there will be unresolved issues, but the true disciple will do all they can to facilitate reconciliation. The conscience will be clear when God is at rest in the heart. Christ died for the reconciliation of the world, but men and women must respond to His gracious offer. Others must respond to that same offer from us. A clear conscience gives us the ability of “having done all to stand” (Eph. 6:13) in matters relating to spiritual warfare. A clean Conscience is vital for victory. Christ did all and gave all; it is incumbent upon His disciples to do the same.

Brian Troxel