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Grace And Continuing Sin - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
April 22, 2022 12:00 am

Grace And Continuing Sin - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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April 22, 2022 12:00 am

Discover how God is always there for you despite how much you've stumbled.

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Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Friday, April 22nd. Some people mistake God's grace as a free pass to sin. That kind of mindset ignores the very real consequences of sin. Here's part one of Grace and Continuing Sin. How many times have you ever been to the Lord and you've said, Now, Lord, I want to ask you to forgive me for this sin in my life. And I'm just trusting that you're going to do that in Jesus' name, and you asked him to forgive you, and so you walked away. Well, next day or next week, you came back with the same thing, and so you got down to pray.

And about time you started praying, somebody whispered in your ear, and you know where it came from. And he said, Are you going to tell him the same thing again? You mean you're going to confess the same old sin? Do you think God's listening to that? How many times do you think he's going to forgive you for the same old stuff? And so Satan really sends you a strong message that after all, you've already asked him to forgive you for that two times, four times, or ten times. And I mean, after all, how much patience do you think God has?

I mean, how much grace is there? I mean, you're confessing the same old stuff over and over and over again. Therefore, you're just wasting your time, and so you respond in one of two ways.

You either think, Well, oh, that's right. I mean, after all, God is so patient, but I mean, enough's enough. And so you either just walk away and carry with you the guilt and the weight of your sin, or you run to the cross, so to speak, and tell God, and remind him, Lord, here's what you said. I'm confessing I'm repenting of this sin again.

You know I'm sincere. I mean what I say, and I'm trusting you to forgive me on the basis of what you promised, not on the basis of how I feel. And so all of us are living either under the reign of the law, or we're living under the reign of grace. And we either understand what forgiveness is all about, or we do not. So this is part of our series on the messages on grace, and the title of this message is Grace and Continuing Sin. What about the grace of God and those things that keep popping up in our life over and over and over again?

So I want you to turn, if you will, to Romans chapter five, and I want us to read the 20th and 21st verses, and then chapter six, the first two verses of that chapter. All of us have had to deal with that in our life, coming back to Him with the same thing over and over and over again, and wondering how long is God going to put up with this? How long is He going to keep forgiving us of the same sin? So in this 20th and 21st verses, Paul says, And the law came in that the transgression might increase, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace might increase? May it never be how shall we who died to sin still live in it. Now, everybody who lives is living under the reign of one of two powerful forces, under the reign of sin or under the reign of grace. And he says in this passage here in the 20th verse, The law came in that the transgression might increase, that where sin increased, grace abounded all the more. Then he says that as sin reigned, then he says as grace reigned. And we talk about sin reigning, we're talking about the force of sin, the power of sin dominating and enslaving the light. Now, what happens is that when sin enters, as it did then, sin grows.

It doesn't just stay the same. It grows in the heart, becoming stronger and stronger and enslaving more and more. Not only does it enslave, but it separates friends and it separates people from God. And this enslaving process ultimately will reach its zenith and that is it will destroy that person. If a person is saved, it cannot destroy their relationship to God, but it can destroy their testimony. It can destroy their fellowship.

It can destroy their joy, their peace, their happiness, their purpose for living. Sin is a destroyer and it is spread by simply human nature. That is every single person who's ever been born has been born with a sinful nature bent away from God and all of us are victims of that sin. We came into this world with a bent away from God, but not only that, we have chosen to sin against God.

All of us by our own choices have sinned against God over and over and over again. We all have this old fleshly nature, our five senses, needs that we have. There is not a single verse in the scripture that even hints at the idea that you and I are ever going to be able to improve this old fleshly nature. You can't improve it.

It was never meant to be improved. That's why Jesus came to live on the inside of us and to express his life through us because he knew you and I could never improve the flesh. It's not improvable and that's why if Jesus Christ were taken out of your life and mine today, we'd be just as bad as we've ever been and we wouldn't be any better than we are because sin separates, grows, enslaves, dominates, destroys, and apart from Christ, we are absolutely, completely and totally helpless and hopeless. And it is nothing but pure stinking pride that would make me everything that I will someday be able to improve and better my flesh. What I want you to see in this passage here, he says in verse 20, And the law came in that the transgression might increase.

So what in the world does that mean? Well, if you look in verse 13 and 14 of the same chapter. For until the law, and let's look at that in terms of the Mosaic law or the moral law, or let's just say for our benefit the Ten Commandments. For until the law, sin was in the world, but the sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Nevertheless, death reigned from Adam until Moses. Now what he's saying is this, that even before there was a written law of God, and let's think in terms of the Ten Commandments, before God gave those laws of that law, the Ten Commandments, there was a law. It was an unwritten law. When Adam and Eve sinned, they knew they had disobeyed God. And so from Adam, as he says, up until Moses, though there was no Ten Commandments, there was law.

It was written in the heart of man. Go back, if you will, to the second chapter of Romans and look, if you will, in the 12th verse. So he says, For all who have sinned without the law, even before there was the written law, will also perish without the law. And all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law will be justified. For when Gentiles or unbelievers who do not have the law do instinctively the things of the law, because it's written in their heart, these not having the law are law to themselves, in that they show the works of the law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them.

And so people say, Well, what about these folks who've never heard of Jesus, my friend? They violate the law of God. They disobey the law of God. They sin against their own conscience.

Every single person has one. God has placed it there, and every person knows some things just absolutely wrong. What he's saying in this passage here in Romans chapter five is this. He says, And the law came in, that is, the law came in for a very specific reason. God gave the law in order to make man to know and to give him a knowledge of what sin is all about, that sin isn't just against each other, that sin is against holy God who will judge mankind. The law was not given in order to save us.

The law was given to expose us. For example, this morning when you got up and you began to dress, you looked in the mirror. Now, when you looked in the mirror, what did the mirror do? The mirror didn't say anything. The mirror just did what? It just reflected your face.

Now, so you said, Well, then I wash my face. Well, did you take the mirror off the wall and scrub the mirror on your face to wash you clean? No, because the purpose of a mirror is not to make you clean. The purpose of a mirror is to do what?

Is to reflect the dirt and to reflect what you look like. What does the law of God do? The law of God doesn't make me clean. The law of God reflects the dirt, the filth, the sin, the wickedness in our soul. God sent his law to expose our filth, to expose our sinfulness, to convict us of it, to show us it is against almighty God. And this is what we are really like. The law says this is what you're really like.

You're absolutely helpless and hopeless to do anything. And so ultimately, the law was to drive men to Christ to be saved by a provision that God provided for our salvation, which he hinted at, which he began in the garden of the Bible says that he provided skins for Adam and Eve, which meant that something had to die, blood had to be shed. And God in the very beginning says, I'm going by my grace to deal with your sin problem. Listen to me, the only way to deal with a sin problem is through the blood of Jesus.

Listen carefully now. Confession alone will not deal with the sin problem. Repentance alone will not deal with the sin problem. Apart from the grace of God, apart from the shedding of the blood of Jesus Christ at Calvary, apart from the cross, there is no dealing with sin.

Now listen carefully. Not even God can wipe away your guilt, erase the penalty of your sin simply because he wants to, simply because he's good, simply because he's gracious, simply because he's kind, simply because he's loving. Listen, no matter how much love God has for you and me, he cannot erase the guilt of our sin simply because he's a good loving God. He said, well, now I don't know why he cannot. Is he not sovereign?

Indeed he is. But the sovereignty of God does not contradict the character of God. The character of God is he is absolutely faithful, he is absolutely truthful.

What did he say? The soul that sinneth it shall die. The wages of sin is death. What does sin do? Sin reigns unto death. The ultimate of all sin is death, spiritual death, physical death, death to the things of God. And so God is the one who laid down the law, the soul that sinneth it shall die.

For God to come along and say, well, yeah, I know that's what I said and because I love you, I'm just going to wipe it out. He cannot do that and remain God. And listen, if he violates one single promise, if he crossed up one of his own laws, you and I could back off and say, wait a minute, hold it.

How do I know that he's going to keep this promise if he broke this one? He doesn't have to break but one promise, violate but one of his own principles to render God no longer faithful. Therefore, the only way God can forgive sin is for God to provide a payment for sin which is life for death. Sin brings forth death and God brings forth life to die in order to pay sin's debt. Listen to me, grace is God's provision for man's sin. It is the only provision for man's sin. It is the grace of God that nailed Jesus Christ to the cross.

Grace is God's provision for your sin that is mine. Therefore, just confessing sin doesn't get us forgiven. Just repenting of sin doesn't get us forgiven. Just crying out to God and telling him how awful we are doesn't get us forgiven. The only way to be forgiven of sin is through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Now I'll say this again. This is why I say if you go to a church somewhere and the cross is never mentioned, the blood is never mentioned, the atoning death of Jesus Christ is never mentioned, get out. Because that theology is not sound, it is not biblical, it is not true because the whole Christian life, the whole Christian message surrounds the cross. Apart from the cross there is no hope, absolutely. Listen, the only other hope we have is in man's goodness. Anything that exalts man and makes man acceptable in the eyes of God minus the cross is absolutely totally erroneous, unbiblical, unscriptural and evil because it exalts man. It is nothing more than pride in man exalting himself. And therefore the law came to expose our sinfulness, our wickedness and our vileness and to show us how absolutely hopeless we are.

Now watch this. Then he says, the law came in that the transgression might increase, that is we may understand what's going on, conviction of sin, knowledge of sin. Then he says, but where sin increase, grace abounded all the more. So there are two things that reign. Either sin is going to reign in our heart or the grace of God is going to reign.

Now look at this for a moment. He said, the grace of God is God's provision for our sin problem. Now he said, the grace of God is God's kindness and graciousness toward us without regard to merit or worth on our part and in spite of what we deserve. Grace is God's loving favor to us in spite of what we deserve. It is undeserved love being poured out upon us. Listen, being poured out upon us abundantly, inexhaustibly, unreservedly the love of God poured out upon us. Not because we deserved it, it has absolutely nothing to do with deserving. It has to do with a loving God.

Listen to this now. Who has the privilege, the authority and the right to love you and me and forgive us of our sins even though we have violated his law and keep on violating his law. His forgiveness is continuous because that is the power of the cross. I want you to look in three verses of scripture and I want you to look for something that's in all three of these verses. I'm not going to tell you what it is at first.

15, 17 and 21. Look at this. He says now, verse 15, but the free gift, the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one that's speaking about him, that's the way sin came, the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.

That is sin came through Satan, grace through Christ. Verse 17. For if by the transgression of one, the sin of Adam again, death rained through the one through Adam, all the whole human race fell, much more those who received the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness made right now as of God will reign in life through the one Jesus Christ. Then verse 21. That as sin rained in death, even so grace might rain through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

There is one primary thing found more than one, but the primary thing found that all three of these verses is this. Whatever you have of the grace of God, it is always through Christ Jesus. It is always through the cross. It is always through the blood of Jesus.

No other way. God's undeserved favor purchased by the cross through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Sin cannot out reign the grace of God.

Now you say, oh, now wait a minute. You mean to tell me that no matter how much I sin according to this verse, it says where sin increase, grace super abounded more. That is, no matter how much sin you have, there's more grace. If your sin weighs two pounds, grace weighs 100. If you've sinned 1000 times, grace is beyond that. You cannot out sin the grace of God. Otherwise, sin could reign over the cross, but it cannot. There's only one act it is the cross.

There's only one person that is Christ. You and I can do absolutely nothing to add to that. And what does that do? Make us prideful? No.

What does that do? Give us license to sin? No, it drives us to our face before almighty God and all of our helplessness and sinfulness. He chose to save us anyway, even though he knew we would sin 1000 times even after we've been forgiven of our sin. How many of you ever committed the same sin more than once? How many of you committed the same sin at least 10 times? When you went to the Lord and asked Him to forgive you of your sin, what did He say?

No way. 596 times, but not 597. Now let me tell you why He won't do that. You remember one time when Jesus and Peter were talking? And Peter said, Lord, how many times, he must have had a proud streak in him, Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother? Seven times sounded real good. Jesus said, Peter, 70 times seven.

Now he wasn't saying 490 times, he was, you know what he was saying? He said, Peter, it doesn't make any difference how many times your brother or sister sins against you, you got to forgive them. It doesn't make any difference what they do, you have to forgive them. It doesn't make any difference how long they do it, you have to forgive them. It doesn't make any difference how intense it is, how painful or hurtful, you have to forgive them. Peter, there's no end to your forgiveness.

Now think about this. If Jesus says to you and me, it doesn't make any difference what anybody does to you, how long they do it and how intensely they do it and for what their motive is, you have to forgive them and there can never come a time in your life when you can say that is enough. No more forgiveness. Well, if that's true, then do you think that you and I are going to be more forgiving than God?

No way. A lost person is forgiven of nothing until they come to Christ, crying out to him for mercy and forgiveness based on the shed blood of Jesus at Calvary. That is the only way to be forgiven of sin.

But let's talk about saints now. We all admitted a while ago some things we'd sinned over and over and over again. Well, how many times does God forgive? I'll tell you how many times he forgives as much as is necessary.

And you know what? There's grace left over. Hallelujah. You cannot out sin the grace of God. And if he expects me to forgive my enemy over and over and over again with no limitation on it, then if God, listen to this, if God put any limitation on his grace, you and I would be greater than God when it came to forgiveness.

We know that's not true. Thank you for listening to Grace and Continuing Sin. If you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-28 22:08:59 / 2023-04-28 22:17:04 / 8

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