Sunday, November 1, 2009

Standing Fast In Liberty

God said by way of the apostle Paul in Galatians 5:1

"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage."

He had just spent four previous chapters correcting the practical error of the Galatian church for having degenerated into the legalism of the Judean converts.
It may or may not be based in the letter of the Old Testament law in our day and time, but there are plenteous forms of cultural legalism to which various allegedly-"Christian" sects attempt to entangle the Believer today. I remember going to a church that taught that if you didn't wear the right kind of clothes, you would lose your salvation and go to hell. Another popular dogma of Christen-DUMB is, if you don't get dunked or sprinkled the way Denomination X or Y prescribes, you're not really saved. Then there's the "faithful remnant" of the so-called Holiness Movement, where you can't be saved unless you "go down to the altar for the 'second work of grace'.

Check this out:
The Bible tells you how to receive eternal life in Romans 10:9 & 10, and absolutely none of this is mentioned as a condition...
Whodathunkit!?

My favorite theologian, George Carlin used to say - in a different context that just happens to fit the salvation-by-sycophancy dogma like a tailor-made suit - "Somebody's gonna be disappointed...Somebody's wastin' their fuckin' time! Gee, could that possibly be, hmmm...everyone!?" Such self-righteous foolishness has emerged anew, indicating that nothing is ever more needful to be taught repeatedly than that which is not sufficiently learned.
It's amazing how anyone can miss this without being completely illiterate when it comes to Scripture, though it could be a failure to believe what's written rather than to read it. Let's review: Jesus Christ said in John 6:47

"Verily, verily I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life."

Take a look at Romans 4. Romans is a doctrinal epistle, conveying foundational spiritual reality in detailed and exemplary fashion. I've shared a few examples of what religious man is saying to rob people of their faith with a view toward manipulating and enslaving them...Let's look at what God says about the power of believing, and how He honors it so as to set them free:

"For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
For what saith the Scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,
Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin." - Romans 4:2-8

Building on these foundations, let's go to Ephesians, and see how God views the relationship between believing and works:

"But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace are ye saved;)
And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God,
Not of works, lest any man should boast." - Ephesians 2:4-9

Believers are saved and kept by God's grace. And the Word - not man-made forms of worship and their overlords - defines what work it is by which we manifest that salvation and eternal life.

"For we are his workmanship (literally, masterpiece), created in Christ Jesus unto good works (for the best work) which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them." - Ephesians 2:10

"Hath before ordained that we should walk in them" means it's God's absolute will that Believers study, learn to the point of acting upon, and apply His Word to every area and situation of their lives, so they can live a life which is more than abundant. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty - unleashing God's Power and seeing victory and deliverance come to pass. And that's also the great work: Lining up your life to the Word and manifesting outside what God's given you inside.
The Word of God takes the place of the absent Christ, so only by believing it can we obtain and manifest our spiritual, physical and complete liberty!

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