[forthright] Holy by grace

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Tue, 27 Mar 2012 04:18:09 -0700 (PDT)
Forthright Magazine
http://forthright.net/
Straight to the Cross

Richard Mansel goes to the Bible to answer ... "The
Most Important Question." Great for classes, groups,
evangelistic studies and individuals.
http://richardmansel.com/most-important-question/


COLUMN: LIVING THE FAITH

Holy by grace
 by Richard Mansel, managing editor
http://tinyurl.com/cuvoen4

God's grace is powerful beyond human comprehension and
the sole source of salvation.

Sin separates us from God and creates a gulf that we
cannot bridge (Isaiah 59:1-2; Romans 3:10-18; 3:23).
Grace allows us to be liberated from the slavery of sin
and a destiny in hell (Matthew 25:46).

In Romans 5, we find the most comprehensive explanation
of salvation. Paul says that by faith we have
justification and access to God (Romans 5:1-2). While
he seemingly contradicts himself a few verses later,
the fuller picture is illuminating.

   "But God demonstrates His own love toward
   us, in that while we were still sinners,
   Christ died for us” (Romans 5:9, NKJV). 

The shed blood on the cross allowed man to return to
God to be justified and reconciled. Christ brought
salvation to the world by his sacrifice on the cross
(Revelation 5:1-5).

Justification and reconciliation are possible by grace,
which is through the blood. Grace allows us the
opportunity to have faith, so we can be saved (Hebrews
11:6).

We cannot do anything to earn grace (Ephesians 2:8-9).
In Christ and in his church, we live and labor to
glorify Christ because we love him and his church
(Ephesians 1:22-23; 3:20-21).

The blood of Christ continues to remit our sins as we
walk and work in Christ (1 John 1:5; Ephesians 1:7).
This shows our love and allegiance to Christ, since we
will be judged by our works at judgment (Ephesians 4:1;
Revelation 20:11-15).

However, in the end, we will still need the grace of
God to enter heaven (Luke 17:5-10).

   “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord
   Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every
   spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in
   Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). 

By grace, we attain everything a Christian can want.
Why would we give that up and walk away (Hebrews 6:4-6;
10:26-29)?

Holiness and sanctification are only possible because
of grace. Yet, they are maintained by grace and faith.
Gratitude for salvation should empower us to walk in
them daily.

Without the blood of Christ, grace and hope would be
meaningless. So, how can we turn our backs on such
blessings? Why would we not come to Jesus for salvation
today?

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