August 19 – Unstoppable – grace AND truth

Read Romans 5:18-6:23

It’s grace and truth, not grace or truth.  It’s forgiveness for my past and a call to righteousness for my present.  I cannot revel in grace and disregard the truth.

But Paul seemed to anticipate our tendency to do just that.

It is true that grace is super-abounding.  It now plays a dominant role in our lives.  In spite of the depths of sin we may have reached in our past, grace can reach deeper still.  Even though the awareness of our sin may increase with our growing understanding of God’s expectations for us, grace is bigger and more powerful.  “Grace” is now the huge and powerful banner under which we live.  We no longer live under “law.”

But an exaggerated awareness of grace can cause us to miss out on the truth of God’s call on us to live righteously.  In every facet.  Without excuse.

We dare not rationalize that by sinning we just multiply grace in our lives (vv. 6:1-14).  To intentionally sin because we know that God’s grace can cover it . . . that is not what God intended.  No.  With our conversion, a death took place.  Our old self was crucified with Christ.  We died to sin.  We are now alive to Christ.  We must understand that truth and operate according to it.

Similarly, we dare not reason that we live under grace and are no longer subject to God’s call to righteous living (vv. 6:15-23).  With our conversion, there was a change in masters.  Having once been a slave to sin, it is no surprise that our past may have included a life without restraint.  But as Jesus followers, we are now slaves to righteousness and slaves to God.  Our life path is to lead towards greater holiness.

You see, grace and truth are to be important parts of our experience.  Our life is to be characterized by forgiveness for our past and increased righteousness into the future.  We cannot revel in the one and disregard the other.  We are called to righteous living and holiness.  So, let us pursue that as people who have been raised to a new life with a new master!

Steve Kern

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