A Facebook friend shared a testimony of dramatic breakthrough in the life of someone who was once living in sin and addicted to drugs, attributing the miracle to the liberating influence of the gospel that emphasises grace.
As usual any good thing, even grace, can be perverted. Jude vehemently condemned false teachers and warned against believing their lies:
“I say this because some ungodly people have wormed their way into your churches, saying that God’s marvelous grace allows us to live immoral lives. The condemnation of such people was recorded long ago, for they have denied our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”
(Jude 4, NKJV)
A believer who willfully lives in sin, and comes under the deception that the Holy Spirit never convicts a believer of sin and that God never finds fault with him, will face damnation on judgment day.
- God is a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29).
- “For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries” (Hebrews 10:26-27).
- The apostle Peter warns us that judgment will begin with the household of God (1 Peter 4:17).
- The apostle Paul warns: “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
Pic above: An explanation of John 1:17 - For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
The God in the New Testament, as is clear from the above references, is not only filled with grace, love and mercy towards man. He is also true to His name as the God of justice, righteousness and wrath.
Though A. W. Tozer lived long before hyper-grace became popular, he made an extremely astute and relevant observation: "Heresy is not so much rejecting as selecting.” False teachers select pleasant, palatable and agreeable passages to attract the masses.
Once we commit our lives to Christ, our sins are forgiven. We who have been set free from the power of sin should no longer feel condemned. To continue to dwell on our past sin would nullify Christ’s work at the cross because God has already declared us righteous in His eyes.
That said, should believers completely get rid of sin consciousness in our lives?