The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe...
"The Commands of Grace"
Hundreds of commands grace the pages of the book of grace, namely, the New Testament of our Lord Jesus Christ. Proportionally, there are at least as many commandments in the New Testament as there are in the Old, a fact that surprises some believers.
"Let us have grace, that we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear" (Hebrews 12:28).
God's freely given favor in the Lord Jesus does not save us from obedience regarding the mandates of our Lord and His New Testament authors. Grace and truth rather save unto such obedience, as made possible through the gift of the indwelling Holy Spirit given to all who trust the Lord Jesus. Born again believers are super-charged vessels of the power of God. We may not always live accordingly, but the same infinite energy that raised our Savior from the dead teems within our redeemed spirits to enable step by step obedience to those hundreds of New Testament commands.
"What is the exceeding greatness of His power to us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ when He raised Him from the dead" (Ephesians 1:19).
"Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us" (Ephesians 3:20).
"I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God with me" (I Corinthians 15:10).
"We shall live with Him by the power of God" (II Corinthians 13:4).
Do we perceive ourselves in this light of grace that leads to a life of faith and faithfulness? Certainly, our Heavenly Father desires that we affirm our Christ-motivated and enabled capacity for obedience. Our spiritual enemies, conversely, desire just the opposite. They seek to divert our focus to past failures, or a present sense of weakness, or fears of future waywardness regarding the will of God. They cannot steal His indwelling life and power, nor can they force us to disobey our Lord. They can, however, tempt us to disbelieve or disregard His abiding presence and enabling. If we succumb, we sadly walk in the footsteps of those of whom it was once said, "He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief" (Matthew 13:58).
No excuses exist for disobedience to the New Testament commands of God's grace and truth in Christ. It happens, of course. We are not yet glorified (I John 1:8). However, no specific act of sin is ever inevitable or excusable. The living Christ dwells in every believer through the presence of the Holy Spirit. Through Him, we must affirm ourselves as able to overcome every temptation. This we must believe, first because it is true, and then because our faithfulness to God ever flows through our faith in Him, His freely given grace, and the power thereof.
"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."
(I Corinthians 10:13)
"God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work."
(II Corinthians 9:8)
Weekly Memory Verse
Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there anything too hard for Me?