July 31, 2018
Hebrews 9:24… For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.
We live in a quandary. We are told that we have all sinned but we are all forgiven; the sin is no longer counted against us. But, then we are told to go and sin no more. So, we attempt to not sin, and when we are successful, we don’t seek forgiveness. But, without forgiveness there is no remission for sins.
So, which is it? Do we sin so that grace will abound or do we not sin so that we will be obedient?
Romans 6:1-2… What shall we say then, Are we to continue in sin so that grace may abound? By no means. How can we who died to sin still live in it?
Paul goes on to explain that we are baptized into Jesus’ death, and when something is dead, it can no longer sin. But, the ongoing work of Jesus is that we are raised in newness of life because of His resurrection. There is no resurrection possible if there is not first a death. Conversely, death is final with no resurrection. When Jesus died on the cross, He took the penalty for our sin. When he rose from the grave, He showed His power to beat the evils of this world. If you have gone through the experience of salvation, including baptism, you are now alive in Him. Paul said it like this:
Galatians 2;20… I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. The life I now life in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God.
When Jesus rose from the grave, He was not putting on a show; He was giving new life to us. God’s love is so great, He could not just give us an example and tell us to imitate it; He also made a way for us. Abundant life is God’s goal for us. We will have abundant life in heaven, but God has given it to us on earth. On our way to heaven, we can live like we are there. That is what Jesus accomplished for us on the cross. Your life is no longer about sinning or not sinning; your life is about abundance in Christ. Jesus is in heaven appealing to God on our behalf. He died, not for Himself, but for you and me.