Changing Grace (4) - Notes
THE NEW WAY
THe old way
For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!LOSING TO WIN
Trying hard and then harder is only natural
Failing hard and then harder is really good
Coming to the end of yourself (for both Salvation AND Sanctification) is God's goal
Now that you are completely over the old way of trying hard to keep the law on your own, you are ready for the new way of living by the Spirit
We have been released from the law so that we serve in the NEW WAY of the Spirit, and not in the OLD WAY of the written code.
Romans 8:1-2 (NET)
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the life-giving Spirit in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death.
ROMANS 7 - Flapping your Arms to Try to Fly
ROMANS 8 - Riding the Hang Glider of the Holy Spirit
Romans 8:3-4 (NET)
For God achieved what the law could not do because it was weakened through the flesh. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and concerning sin, he condemned sin in the flesh,We died to the Law: freed from the Law so that the righteous requirement of the law may be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
Not your Body
Self-Reliance (Human Effort)
HOW CAN WE KEEP GOD’S LAW?
Not the Old Way by Human Effort - (Romans 7)
But the New Way by the Spirit - (Romans 8)
“This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the Lord. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.”
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
HOW CAN WE KEEP GOD’S LAW?
The New Way - The Spirit
Writes God’s Law on our Hearts
And empowers us to live it from the inside out
Romans 8:5-7 (NET)
For those who live according to the flesh have their outlook shaped by the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their outlook shaped by the things of the Spirit. For the outlook of the flesh is death, but the outlook of the Spirit is life and peace, because the outlook of the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to the law of God, nor is it able to do so.
Self-Reliance (Human Effort)
Self-Centeredness (The Promotion, Protection and Pleasure of Self)
FLESH CAN’T KEEP THE LAW
Self-Reliance never works
Self-Centeredness always gets in the way
Romans 8:8-9 (NET)
Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, this person does not belong to him.
Romans 8:10-13 (NET)
But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is your life because of righteousness. Moreover if the Spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you, the one who raised Christ from the dead will also make your mortal bodies alive through his Spirit who lives in you. So then, brothers and sisters, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh (for if you live according to the flesh, you will die), but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live.
THE NEW WAY
Stop Trying Harder (which only activates the flesh)
Start Depending More on the Spirit
In EVERY Situation and Decision Pause and Pray for the Spirit’s Direction and Help
If You Fall, Fall Forward (No Condemnation)
Then Depend on the Spirit All Over Again
ARE YOU LIVING THE OLD WAY?
Trying to be Good and Improve by Human Effort (the Flesh)
ARE YOU LIVING THE NEW WAY?
Depending on the Holy Spirit to change you from the inside out
Because He has written God’s Law on your heart & is moving you to keep it
Suddenly and powerfully and consciously, I was saved. Such a peace and freedom from fear, such a sweet and sure assurance filled my soul. I turned to my mother and said, “Mother, I am saved.” She looked at me and nearly collapsed, and said, “When?” I said, “Just now.” “Where?” “Here, where I am sitting?” She cried with joy unspeakable. She couldn’t say a word, but just hugged me and cried.
I tried hard to love God, the Bible, the church, and prayer; but what a failure I made of it. All grosser sins dropped off me and I had no sorrow about it, or any bother with them; but the sins of the flesh and the spirit continued to plague me greatly: envy, jealousy, malice, hatred. I could crush them down, but they continued to rise up again, more vigorous than ever.
I attended church twice every Sunday, and joined the men’s Bible class. I read my Bible but didn’t get any good out of it, and had little or no desire for it. Prayer was a real penance [just a religious duty], and seemingly useless. What a wretched, miserable experience I was passing through.
Stuart Holden made the secret to the victorious Christian life so clear and plain. After one has been born again by the Spirit of God he can live victoriously ONLY by the Holy Spirit. I began to understand that I could not attain this life by self effort or ceremonies, for it was “not by might nor by power, but by the Spirit.” It was not an ATTAINMENT, but an OBTAINMENT [not by works, but by grace]. Christ was God’s unspeakable gift to the world. The Holy Spirit was Christ’s gift to the church. I had been trying to do what the Holy Spirit ALONE could, and would, do for me. But I must receive Him by faith, on the ground of grace, and He would sanctify my heart, and apply the Blood, thus cleansing me from all sin and making the victory purchased by Christ on Calvary experiential. As I walked in the light as He was in the light, He would maintain the life of holiness and victory in my life day by day.
I became more and more miserable and, oh, so hungry for freedom and victory. At last I was so desperate. The last night of the convention I saw it was a clean-cut, unconditional surrender; or continued wandering in failure, defeat and dissatisfaction. I made the complete unconditional surrender. I cried out, “Come in. Come in, Holy Spirit. Begin your work of great blessing. By faith I lay hold of the promise, and claim complete victory over sin.”