Sunday, 21 July 2013

In Christ: Impetus for Holy Living

Hello All,
Today’s poem was another one written based on a sermon series delivered by Sam Allberry in my church’s annual camp in 2012.

In Christ: Impetus for Holy Living
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling (7th May 2012)

In Christ we are called to be holy
To continue in sin is great folly!
For Christ Jesus has broken the chains
Of sin which no longer reigns

Listen here, sin, we bid you good bye!
Be gone with your deception and lies!
For Christ has redeemed us from slavery
To your control, dominion and mastery

Let us consecrate our hearts to the Lord
To walk in His holiness is great reward
But when we fall to sin's alluring call
Run to the cross that has conquered all

Points for Reflection:
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? (Romans 6:1-3)
·         With regard to the subject on holy living, most Christians have a tendency to swing to two extremes: -
  1. Cheap Grace
  2. Merited Grace
·         Christians who believe in cheap grace have the standing that since salvation is not earned by our good works but through Christ’s death on the cross, we are free to indulge in a life of sin and pleasure.
·         On the other hand, Christians who believe in merited grace are insecure about their salvation in Jesus Christ and would try their very best to live holy lives to earn their place in heaven.
·         But the Bible tells us that God has chosen unworthy sinners like us to be justified by Christ’s atoning death on the cross. Because we have been saved by God’s grace, he has redeemed us as his beloved children and has set us free from the dominion of sin. He has given us the Holy Spirit to enable us to gradually and daily change sinful areas in our lives. Thus, good works are products and evidence of salvation instead of a ticket to heaven.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:8-10)    
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)
But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:22-23)
 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. (Galatians 5:16-18)

·         Which extreme are you more inclined to lean towards? Do you call yourself a Christian although you are immersed in a life of frivolous sinning? Are there sinful areas in your life which you are clinging on to? Are you constantly striving to earn God’s forgiveness and approval? Are you unsure about your deposit guarantee in heaven? I pray with all my heart for the Holy Spirit to convict and rebuke those who believe in cheap grace and to comfort and assure those who are enslaved by merited grace. However, for those of you who are gospel-centered Christians, may I urge you to encourage your family or friends who need to know the true gospel of grace in Christ Jesus.