4Jesus Outreach

Proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ.

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If Christ Be In You

http://www.RealJesus.net“Likewise you also, consider yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Messiah Jesus our Lord. Therefore, do not continue to allow the corrupting influence of the old sin nature to rule in your mind, emotions and body, that you should obey its desires…for the old sin nature shall no longer have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.” ROMANS 6:11-12, 14 (JCV)

     The Word of God clearly teaches us that now in the New Testament we are no longer under the Old Covenant Law, but under the New Covenant of Grace. The Old Testament Law of Moses was good as a schoolmaster in pointing out our sinful tendencies — what offends God, and the proper way we should live. It helped us understand the sinfulness of stealing, murder, dishonoring our parents, not keeping the Sabbath day holy, lusting after another man’s wife, coveting your neighbor’s property, and so on. But what the Law of Moses could not do, was to break the power of sin over our lives.

Crucified and Resurrected with Christ

          Under the New Covenant of Grace, we are to reckon ourselves “crucified and resurrected with Jesus Christ, that we should no longer be the slaves of our old sinful natures. For He that has died along with Christ our Messiah, has been freed from the power of sin” (Romans 6:7). Therefore, we are to reckon ourselves to be as “dead as a doorknob” to sin through the grace and resurrection power God has provided for us through Jesus Christ. There is no excuse for us to continue allowing the old sinful nature to rule our lives when we now have the righteous life of Jesus Christ living in us.

“And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.”
– Romans 8:10

         If you are a true Christian and you have been saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ the Messiah, then Christ is living in you through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Do you believe that? Then you are no longer the same person you used to be. Your old person died when you accepted Jesus as your Savior and Lord by faith. You are a new creation in Christ and have been resurrected with Him to a new life.

As a result of being “born again”:

1.             You have identified with Christ’s death by crucifixion, burial, and resurrection.

2.             Your old sinful nature has been crucified and put to death in Christ.

3.             A new nature has been given to you that replaces the old nature. You have been resurrected to a new life of righteousness through the operation of God’s Spirit.

Does that mean we can never sin?

            Not at all. We all still struggle with the old sinful nature that tries to resurrect again and attempts to regain control of us. But we must not allow it to do so. We need to remind it that it has been crucified with Christ, and it has no more power over us. When we are tempted to sin, we don’t have to sin. We now have the power of God living in us and we can say “no” to sin when it rears its ugly little head.

            When we were under the Old Testament Law of Moses, we didn’t have the power to say no to sin. We were under the bondage of sin and “slaves to sin”. The Law simply made us aware that we were sinning, but it was helpless to help us do anything to prevent it. We could not stop sinning. However, those today who are walking by faith in the New Covenant Gospel are “no longer under the law but under grace”, says the apostle Paul, a converted Jew who once followed the Old Testament Law to his own admission of frustration.

What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God–through Jesus Christ our Lord!“ – Romans 7:24-25

By His stripes we are healed from sin.

The apostle Peter, another converted Jew, also testifies that the Old Testament Law was helpless to free us from sin. He admits that the only way we can be healed from our sinful nature is by the grace of God through faith in Christ’s death on the cross on our behalf:

            “Who [Christ] Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree [cross], that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness – by whose stripes you were healed.” – 1 Peter 2:24

     The Old Testament Law could do nothing to keep us from sinning. Yahovah God’s followers in the Old Testament confessed their sins in the Temple. They also brought their animal sacrifices and offerings before the Levitical Priests for slaughter to atone for their sins. But after they left the Temple they continued to commit the same sins over and over again. In due course, they were back in the Temple again confessing the same sins.

     Under the New Covenant, we not only have the ability to receive atonement for our sinful acts, but also to enter into a new realm of spiritual experience – of experiencing an inward transformation of our natures.

“This is the new covenant I will make with my people on that day,  says the Lord: I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds – Hebrews 10:16

The Gospel of Victory or Defeat?

     Is your church preaching a gospel of victory or defeat? The apostle Paul pronounced a “curse” over any minister or preacher that is teaching believers to return to the Old Testament Law of Moses for salvation and justification before God. If your church is preaching “another Jesus or another gospel” he declared,As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.” – Galatians 1:9

There is no truth of greater importance in the whole Bible than this:

That Christ died, not only to forgive us of our sins, but also to redeem us from our sinful natures.

     Tragically, many of God’s people do not believe this and are still trying to earn their own justification before God by the legalistic keeping of the Old Testament Law. The prophet Hosea rightly denounced this ignorance when he wrote, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” – Hosea 4:6

     If God’s people do not come out of legalistic churches that emphasize salvation by works and embrace the truth of the New Covenant Gospel of Grace, they cannot experience it’s life transforming power and victory over sin. And if they don’t experience it, they will live their entire lives practicing a powerless form of religion and frustrated with a continual struggle with sin. They will never experience the supernatural power and victory that true Christianity should produce in a believer’s life.

–         Luis Yosefus