"Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord. It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you. Watch out for those dogs, those workers of evil, those mutilators of the flesh! For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh.”
In Philippians 3, Paul writes to the Philippian believers for the purpose of protecting them [safeguard] from the evil religious leaders of his day who were mutilating grace.
According to the Bible, teachers who reject the gospel of grace when others try to teach it to them have been taken captive by the devil to do his will (2 Timothy 2:23-26).
In addition, their hearts are closed and their minds have been blinded to grace by the god of this age (2 Corinthians 3:14-16; 4:3-6).
When communicating with Bible teachers who reject the fullness of grace, Paul gives great advice to Timothy (2 Timothy 2:23-26)
1. Don't Argue
2. Be Kind
3. Be Patient
By having this attitude toward Bible teachers who have been taken captive by the devil to do his will, which is to suppress the good news of grace, their hearts may be softened and their eyes opened in the hope God will grant them repentance, leading to a knowledge of the truth of grace (2 Timothy 2:25).
There is a person in the Bible who lived in mental torment because he sincerely tried to adhere to the Ten Commandments.
The more he tried to obey them, the more he disobeyed them.
He was in mental torment because the law he loved and tried to live by sentenced, or condemned, him to death.
He asked who could rescue him from this condemnation.
He then gave thanks to God for Jesus who took his condemnation.
Consequently, there was no more condemnation for this man because he placed his faith in Christ and was in Christ.
Did You Know?
The Ten Commandments were given by God to enlighten us about sin, increase sin in our lives, expose sin in our hearts and minds, and then execute us for our sin (Romans 5:20; 7:7-25; 2 Corinthians 3).
But, Jesus, because of God's great love and grace, took our execution (Romans 5:8).
By faith in Jesus, we are freed from the Ten Commandments (2 Corinthians 3; Galatians 4:6, 5:1; Romans 8:1-3)
We now live in a love relationship with God where we call him Abba Father through the Spirit of Jesus who lives in our hearts (Romans 8:14-16; Galatians 4:6).
Did you know the Bible teaches that if you are in Christ you are free from the Ten Commandments and the bondage it brings?
Yet this is exactly what the Bible teaches.
It seems absurd, even heretical, to view the Ten Commandments as something we need to be freed from and that can put someone into bondage.
It seems the commandments, if obeyed by someone, can lead to freedom.
But that is the problem.
The Bible teaches that no one can obey the Ten Commandments (Romans 3:9-20).
We have all sinned and broken the Ten Commandments (Romans 3:23).
Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. The mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind of the flesh is hostile to God: It does not submit to God’s Law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the flesh cannot please God.
What does it mean to live according to the flesh (the mind of the flesh) and what does it mean to live according to the Spirit (the mind of the Spirit)?
Aha Moment #8:
When I realized God only wanted a transparent, honest, love-relationship with me as my Father, where I was free to share with him my hurts, habits, hang-ups, and hopes without fear of his rejection, but guaranteed of his acceptance. This love-relationship replaced living by a list of rules such as "make sure you pray, read your Bible, have a quiet time, journal, memorize Scripture, and witness every day".
Aha Moment #7:
When I realized believers are called saints (holy, righteous, and forgiven ones), and never sinners saved by grace.
A popular sermon series by many pastors is entitled "All In".
This series comes from the Great Commandment verses in the Bible taken completely out of context and is intended to motivate believers to be "all in" for God, to move them from being "a spectator to a participator" in the church.
If believers are not careful, they will be misled by this series, trying to be "all in" for God, when God is not asking them to be "all in" for him.
1 John #8 (2:1-2)
So What Do We Do When We Sin?
When teaching about the full forgiveness of our sins through Jesus, where we no longer spend our lives confessing our sins for forgiveness, but rather claiming that we are forgiven eternally through faith in Jesus, I am asked:
“So what do you do when you sin?”
This question is proof the good news of God’s grace is being taught, and it is a great question to ask the one teaching the full forgiveness of sins.
More than likely, it was a question asked to John on numerous occasions, which is why he answers the question in 1 John 2:1-2.
In the previous post, we learned that Peter deserted grace
and returned to the law for righteousness.
He reverted to the law, following its mandate for a Jew to
not mix with the Gentiles so the nation of Israel would not abandon God by
following the false gods of the Gentile nations.
They were not to eat with or marry Gentiles.
The nation of Israel was to be a light to the Gentiles by
revealing the truth about God.
When Jesus came, he was the light to the Gentiles.
Through his death, Jesus ended the Law of Moses, enabling
Jews and Gentiles to assemble in on body.