Saved…! Now what?

Glory, I’m saved…

Glory, I’m saved…

My sins are all pardoned, my guilt is all gone!

Glory, I’m saved…

Glory, I’m saved…

I’m saved by the blood of the crucified one!

What a wonderful song to be able to sing in grace and truth!  I pray that you, dear reader, can sing the same; and if so… well, now what?  Are we now free to live a life without regard for consequences, knowing as we do that heaven is the surest thing in the universe for us?  This is, after all, exactly what our legalistic brethren, clinging as they do to religious bondage, accuse us grace believers of.  If they only read what Paul wrote in their Bibles…  What does our apostle, sent directly by Christ to us, have to say about this?

Romans 6:1-2… “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?  God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?

Of course we are not freed in order to sin.  Now that, by the light of our quickened spirit (Col 2:13), we are far more conscious of sin in ourselves, it actually becomes far more disturbing to us; and while it is not possible to stop sinning as long as we are living in these bodies of flesh; the more we come to understand all that Christ has done for us, the less we seek to knowingly live in a way that would be displeasing to our Lord.

Note carefully that Paul says we are dead to sin.

Romans 6:11…  “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

It is certainly easier for the mind to logically conclude the truth of these words, than the will of the flesh to follow suit.  While none of these early posts are exhaustive dissertations on any particular subject, in Paul’s epistles are found the means by which we come to live victorious lives in Christ, despite the battle our flesh will provide along every step of the way.  Paul explains the frustration (read slowly and carefully):

Romans 7:15-24… “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.  If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.  Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.  For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.  For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.  O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

Of course it is the cross work of Jesus Christ who saves Paul (and us) from this body of sin and death!  The saved man will find himself in a battle with his worst enemy (which satan takes full advantage of); himself.  The “reckoning” then, the completely conscious understanding that one IS indeed DEAD unto sin, is the key to true Christian living.  We will sin.  We can’t not sin.  Yet sin is not the issue in our lives any longer.  Christ dealt sin its fatal blow on the cross to any and all who will place their faith and trust in Him.  The punishment for sin is past and placed upon our Lord for us.  We, being in Him through faith, have been judicially crucified by God with Him.  God is so very good.  Amen.

This thought, taken to its logical conclusion, begs a good question.  If we have been freed from sin and death, and we are secured a place in heaven already, currently judicially seated with Christ at the right hand of God the father…

Romans 6:3-7… “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?  Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.  For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.  For he that is dead is freed from sin.

…thought continued below the lines…

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Point of clarification… this is NOT baptism with water.

As the Jewish believers were baptized with water AND baptized BY Christ WITH the Spirit (whose power demonstrated itself through them); we are baptized BY the Spirit INTO Christ’s body, which is the one true church today (note: it is NOT a denomination).  Ours is a spiritual baptism which takes place at the moment of salvation, as a man places his trust in the completed work of Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 1:13-14… “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

1 Corinthians 1:17… “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

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…the question then becomes, what are we still doing here?  Why does God not take us immediately out of this world as we have come to saving knowledge of Him?  The answer is: that, AS He has bought us with the price of His own blood…

1 Corinthians 6:20… “For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

…and we belong to God as His purchased posession, He has given us a job to do.  The Lord Jesus Christ is not here on earth.  He is currently seated at Gods right hand in the third heaven.  How are those around us to come to saving knowledge as we have, unless someone in Christ’s stead, should show them?  Some of my personally favorite scripture…

2 Corinthians 5:17-21… “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

As saved men and women, we are, in Christ’s absence, and without Israel yet functioning as prophisied; His earthly ambassadors.  The ministry of reconciliation is given to you and I.  God has reconciled us (all people) to Himself; no longer imputing our (anyone’s) trespasses unto them; formally declaring grace and peace to us (and all people everywhere) by way of the apostle Paul; and asks that we in turn inform people of this abundant grace which He has shown.  This blog and this church is my way of doing what He asks me to do.  If you appreciate what you read, please share it with those you know AND those you don’t.

Christians seem to be very confused by what the “will of God” is for their lives, AS IF God wants something very unique for each and every one of us.  He does not.  He wants the same thing for all people everywhere.  What is that good and acceptable will of God for all?

1 Tim 2:3-4… “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

Right there, in one single verse, is the will of God for all people everywhere.  God does not “work in mysterious ways” at all (though He did keep a secret until He sent Paul).  His will is to have all men saved and then to come unto the knowledge of the truth.  Saving knowledge is easy.  “Christ died for your sin.”  Further knowledge requires study.  More specifically it requires us to study what God told Paul.

1 Tim 2:15… “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, RIGHTLY DIVIDING the word of truth.

So, once saved, we are to begin to study Gods word in order to begin to more fully comprehend His Truth.  Why?  Because we are saved UNTO good works.

Ephesians 2:10… “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus UNTO good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

We are NEVER saved BY good works.  We are saved UNTO good works.  What then is a “good work”?  Helping an elderly lady cross the street?  If I help several million safely cross, have I accomplished anything eternal?  Have any come to the saving knowledge of Christ?  No.  A good work then is a work that brings someone into the will of God for today, and, as we just learned, Gods very will is that all men should be saved and then come unto the knowledge of the truth.  This then is the saved mans ultimate function in this world.  Bringing people unto the saving knowledge of Christ and teaching them what Christ has done for them is the answer to the question; now what?

Ephesians 4:1… “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

Colossians 1:10… “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

2 Tim 2:24-26… “And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.

Most professing Christians will suggest you begin studying by reading the 4 “gospel” accounts of Jesus life.  This is a tragic mistake as the 4 “gospels” are not written TO us and can only lead us into more confusion, dishonesty and ultimate failure as we try to do things we are not capable of doing.  We can certainly learn valuable things about our Lord and what He is doing for Israel and for the Gentile nations in the future in them and they are therefore very important to us.  Believers today however, should begin to study the book of Romans, keeping in mind that chapters 9, 10 and 11 are written about the nation Israel.  Who they were, where they are now (they ARE not) and who they will be in the future.  Open His Book and start learning what God hath wrought for you, for us.  It is sure to alter your very existence.  Peace…

Next Post: “Israel’s future; but first, rapture, anti-christ!?!

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