Every person is
reconciled to God by believing on the Lord Jesus Christ. This is how one
receives the power to become a son of God.
Believing on the Son of God costs something because
God requires those who are saved to confess Jesus Christ before men. Jewish believers were (and are) put out of
the synagogue and considered as dead by their families when they come to
Christ. The same goes for believers who have come out of Hinduism, Islam,
and other backgrounds. Sometimes Moslem believers are killed by their
own families for confessing Christ before men.
When a new Christian
confesses the Lord Jesus Christ before their hostile relatives and is
slain for it, is this a "work" that is added to the free gift of
salvation which is in Christ Jesus? Most certainly not; rather,
it is faith that is alive and as such manifests itself in love and
loyalty for Christ.
A Christian who is newly
born in Christ in the United States may know very little about
denying himself and taking up his cross (yet), but a newborn believer
in China may learn that fact of the Christian life the first day. Not
denying Christ is essential for a Christian but is in no way to be
considered a work that earns one a place in heaven. No works can earn
heaven, but good works do accompany saving faith.
When a person receives Christ, they don't know anything, really,
about what it means to be a Christian except that they know they need their
sins forgiven and the Lord Jesus Christ has promised to do that if we
will come to Him empty-handed and with faith.
What is being censored right out of
the modern-day gospel presentation is fact that a true Christian WILL
Christian life! Jesus Christ will most definitely live through you
in the person of the Holy Ghost IF you will yield to His will. Those who
refuse to yield to His will are placing themselves back under the law
and its condemnation. See:
Walking After the Flesh = Under Law;
Walking After the Spirit = Under Grace
The Christian life is an outflow of being saved by grace. We are not
active sinners saved by grace, we are now saints (who occasionally sin but are grieved by it)
who walk in newness of life by the grace that brings salvation.
It is only as you live under the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ that you learn what it is He will
call you to do for him that consists of denying yourself, taking up your
cross, obeying Him, fellowshipping with him, etc. Those newly saved have
no concept of this and God doesn't expect them to fully understand, but
only to know that He is now their God and Heavenly Father and that He
will guide them as they walk in newness of life...one baby step at a
This article, "The High Cost of a Free Gift" is not for
newborn believers. It is for those who have have had enough time to read
the New Testament and who yet continue to rationalize their willful sin:
"I don't have to
obey this precept. I
don't have to obey that command. I don't want to give up this or that
sin. I am justified freely by His grace, and therefore MY
continued sins are covered by the blood of the Lamb. I'm not perfect,
just forgiven, you know. The ONLY difference between me and my
unbelieving friend is my faith in Jesus. I have faith that my continued
sinning is unseen by the eyes of Jesus Christ because He shed his blood
False teachers in the
pulpit and on the internet have given Christians plenty of
rationalizations such as the following:
"After all, to say that I could not carry on in the sins that I
still enjoy would be to say that salvation is not a free gift. If
salvation is truly free, then I can sin freely, and I intend to enjoy
popular culture as much as possible. I don't intend to prove that my
activities are acceptable to the Lord. That's commanded but when you get
down to the nitty- gritty, it is unnecessary. Because my salvation is a
free gift, I am free to live in the lifestyle that suits me."
This is CARNAL REASONING and not Bible truth. Why is it that so many
believers—most Christians in fact—have no problem with the apparent
contradiction of the teaching in scripture that Jesus is fully man and
fully God at the same time? This is what the Bible teaches and so, by
faith, believers accept this as truth with no problem.
Well, in the same way, the Bible teaches two seemingly
opposing truths regarding salvation: Salvation is a free gift given to
us by the precious Lord Jesus Christ in the shedding of His blood for
our sins, and that to receive this free gift, we must receive the person
of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself by faith. The Bible also teaches the fact that believers must
place themselves under the authority of the one who
purchased them with His own blood—Jesus Christ. The Bible says we must
keep ourselves in the love of God, (Jude 1:21) Press toward the mark of
the high calling of God in Christ Jesus (Phil. 3:14), stand fast in the
Lord (1 Thess. 3:8), love not the world nor the things that are in the
world, (1 Jn. 2:15), cleanse ourselves of all filthiness of flesh and
spirit, be subject to Christ, etc. This is a very short list. Scripture
has many more admonitions for possessors of the free gift. Unbelievers,
non-possessors of the free gift of eternal life, are not given these
commands, and are ONLY given the command to repent and believe the
gospel (Mk. 1:15).
The free gift does not free us to live for ourselves, walk after the
flesh, commit fornication, uncleanness, idolatry, inordinate affection,
evil concupiscence, murmuring, strife, backbiting, and slander. The free
gift does not give us the liberty to engage in "filthiness, foolish
talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient" (Eph. 5:4) The free
gift denies us many things the world runs after. In fact, the free gift denies us the pleasures of sin. As purchased possessions
that are bought with a price and now belong to God, we must "glorify God in our bodies, and in our
spirits, which are God's."
I thank the Lord Jesus Christ that He has made salvation so plain in
His precious word. Salvation is a free gift because God said so.
God also defined what the free gift entails in the life of the one
possessing it. God provided the dear Holy Spirit to work in us the
character of the Lord Jesus
Christ. Everything we need for eternal life has been given to us by God.
All we must do is take Him at His word and believe everything God has
said about salvation.
P.S. I feel an explanation and/or correction is needed here:
"The Christian life is an outflow of being saved by grace. We are
not active sinners saved by grace (as we are when we initially come to
Christ), we are now saints (who occasionally sin but are grieved by it)
saved and walking in newness of life by grace."-end quote
When I wrote we are not active sinners saved by grace (as we are when
we initially come to Christ) I did not mean that one can still be in
love with sin and be bent on continuing when one comes to saving faith
in Christ. What I did mean, and am now clarifying, is that one must be
willing to part with their sin. This is no way means they—save
themselves from their sin-this only the Lord Jesus Christ can do. The sinner cannot
save himself, but he must be willing to be saved from the power as well
as the penalty of his sins.
My point was that you hear
believers saying all the time, "I'm just a sinner (present tense!) saved
by grace!" Where is this taught in the Bible? A sinner must be willing
to part with sin when comes to Jesus Christ in complete faith that he will save him from
sins. Nowhere does the Bible teach that saints are
remain sinners. To the contrary, saints become known as "the righteous."
God contrasts the sinner and the righteous:
"And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly
and the sinner appear?"-1 Pet. 4:18
True Gospel Vs False Gospel Articles