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The Daily Word of Righteousness
Too Hard!, continued
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. (I Peter 5:10—NIV)
We also teach that after you have suffered for a while God will establish, strengthen, and settle you.
We teach that God will accept nothing less than the offering of your body as a sacrifice of worship.
We teach that Jesus must become not only your Savior but your absolute Lord. You must obey Him in all things. He may bring you into much suffering. You are not to complain or become angry with God or people. You are to keep on serving, keep on serving, keep on serving. You are to be the slave of righteousness, according to the sixth chapter of Romans.
God does not exist to serve you and make you happy. You exist to serve God and make Him happy. This is what we teach.
In many instances the believers of today are not able to bear such preaching. They run back to someone who will tell them that Jesus did it all and their part is to wait for the rapture.
However, the above is not the heart of the "too hard" complaint, only some side objections.
The real problem centers on what we have to say concerning the believer who does not do what God says. This is where we become "too hard."
The current teaching presents an unscriptural "state of grace." Unlike the saints of past history, the Christian is enclosed in a bubble that prevents God from seeing his conduct. Although he should try to do good, if he does not the consequences are not really serious. Numerous believers derive their security and joy from this unscriptural teaching.
There is no such thing as a "state of grace." Find it in the Scriptures if you can. It does not exist. It is a delusion.
The goal of God for man never changes, never, never, never! God's goal for man is that he be in the moral image of God and live in the center of God's will. There never has been and never will be any other goal for man. Man has been created to be in the moral image of God and also in God's likeness. This is how Jesus is and we are called to be in Christ's image, both on the inside and the outside.
From Adam and Eve to the present hour, God has increased His demands on people and also given the grace (enabling virtue, wisdom and power) to make it possible for people to respond to His demands.
The goal of the Christian salvation is the same as from the time of Adam. But the demands are infinitely greater (Adam was never asked to present his body a living sacrifice). The grace is infinitely greater (Adam did not have the blood atonement to forgive his sins; he did not have the body and blood of Christ to give him inward spiritual life; he did not have the Holy Spirit to help and empower him; he did not have the born-again experience, the forming of Christ in him, to change him from a living soul to a life-giving spirit).
The demands on Adam were much less than those applied to us. The Divine grace given to Adam was much less than the Virtue of God given to us. But the goal remains the same.
To be continued.