THE TRUTH ABOUT SIN A BIBLICAL STUDY ON SIN AND SALVATION

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1 SESSION 3 SIN AND SANCTIFICATION I. REVIEW OF FOUNDATIONAL TRUTHS 1. Sin is destructive and brings death to every area of our life [Rom. 6:23]. 2. Sin is to break God s holy and righteous standards in act, attitude, or nature. [1 John 3:4]. 3. Sin was conquered at the cross, but is still at war with the believer [1 John 1:5 2:2]. 4. The Law exposes sin and leads men s to the blood stained cross of Christ [1 Tim. 1:8 10]. 5. The wrath of God is the Biblical teaching of God s holy hatred for sin [Rom. 1:18,2:5]. 6. God s grace empowers wholeheartedness to Jesus, not compromise [Titus 2:11 14]. 7. Salvation is a lifelong process of being saved from sin by the power of God [1 Cor. 1:18] II. THE BIBLICAL VIEW OF THE GRACE OF GOD A. God is calling the Church in our generation to war against sin in the grace of God. The grace of God is the ability or power of God on our heart that provokes wholeheartedness to Jesus. True grace teaches us to deny, resist, and overcome sin by walking in obedience to Jesus. Titus 2:11,12 The grace of God that brings salvation 12 teaches us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, B. Today a false message is emerging that teaches grace as a license to continue in compromise. False grace promises the forgiveness of sin without the need for repentance. It gives a false confidence of God s love and approval of our lives regardless of how we are living. Jude 1:4 NIV For certain individuals have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ C. True grace empowers love for Jesus and obedience to His commands. False grace however gives the assurance of God s unmerited favor without the need to respond to God in obedience. False grace justifies sin while claiming the free benefits of Calvary. D. False grace emphasizes God s unconditional love at the expense of His holiness. God s love is extravagant but it is not unconditional. Receiving and experiencing the love of God is conditioned upon repentance and obedience to Jesus. Abiding in God s love requires a spirit of obedience. John 14:15,21 If you love Me, keep My commandments 21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father John 15:10 "If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. 1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. 1 P a g e

2 III. SIN AND SALVATION A. Paul poured out his life as a messenger of the Gospel of Grace. God s grace, understood in the right way, is at the heart of the Gospel because it gives us victory over sin and imparts to us God s righteousness as a free gift. By grace we are saved through faith [Eph. 2:8]. Acts 20:24 Nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. B. Many people do not walk in victory over sin because of a misunderstanding concerning grace. Grace is not the good news of God s unconditional acceptance of us regardless of how we live. The good news of grace is that God s ability is imparted to us as we repent, believe, and obey. Mark 1:15 The time is fulfilled, the kingdom is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel." C. The Gospel of Grace is built upon the truth that Jesus has come to save us from our sins. This is one of the fundamental purposes of why Jesus came to the earth: We all were sinners in need of redemption and deserving of judgment [Rom. 5:8 10]. 1 Corinthians 15:3 Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, Matthew 1:21 "You shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins, Galatians 1:4 [Christ] gave Himself for our sins D. The true gospel of grace is good news that Christ has come to set us free from sin (that which separates us from intimacy with God) and its eternal consequences (hell and eternal judgment). This truth sounds old school, but it is just plain Biblical. a. The revelation of sin and our nature as a sinner is central to the Biblical view of salvation. Historically this has been called the doctrine of Original Sin or Human Depravity. Without that revelation at the core of our faith we have a false gospel. 1 Timothy 1:15 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief. b. God s love for us is seen most clearly when we see how far He would go in saving us despite our sin and utter unworthiness. We deserved nothing but wrath, but He showed us mercy. The truth of Total Depravity does not magnify sin. It magnifies Jesus and displays the depths of His love. Romans 5:6 8 When we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Ephesians 2:3 5 NIV We were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions it is by grace you have been saved. 2 P a g e

3 IV. THE THREE FOLD PROCESS OF SALVATION A. Salvation is not simply the forgiveness of sins, but is a work of the Holy Spirit by which we become free from sin and its effects. Salvation affects us body, soul, and spirit. When we repent Jesus breaks the power of sin and sets us free to live a life of triumph and victory in Him [2 Cor. 2:14]. 1 Thessalonians 5:23 May the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. B. The Three fold Process of Salvation from sin: 1. Justification: Our legal position past tense, focused on my Spirit (I have been saved). Ephesians 2:8 By grace you have been saved through faith 2. Sanctification: Our living condition present tense, focused on my soul (I am being saved). 1 Corinthians 1:18 To us who are being saved it is the power of God. 3. Glorification: Our eternal exaltation future tense, focused on my body (I will be saved). Matthew 10:22 He who endures to the end will be saved. C. Salvation is the process of being saved from our sins, not simply being saved from Hell [Matt. 1:21]. Because of sin we deserve hell and the wrath of God. If the issue of sin within us is dealt with it resolves the issue of God s wrath and hell toward us. 1. Justification We have been saved from past sins. 2. Sanctification We are being saved from present sins. 3. Glorification We will be saved from future sins. V. JUSTIFICATION OUR LEGAL POSITION A. One third of our salvation is complete the moment we are born again. We are instantaneously forgiven and cleansed of sin [1 Jn. 1:9], a new creation [2 Cor. 5:17], brought near to God [Eph. 2:13], delivered from darkness [Col.1:13], made alive in Christ [Eph. 2:5], given God s righteousness [2 Cor. 5:21], adopted into God s family [Rom. 8:15], recipients of the Holy Spirit [Jn. 14:16,17]. 2 Corinthians 5:17 If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation [born again, regenerated]; old things [sins] have passed away; behold, all things [spiritually] have become new. B. Justification is a legal act in which God counts our sins as forgiven, and declares us as clean and righteous because of Jesus. Because we are in Christ through His death and resurrection, the righteousness of God is imputed to us though we have not yet become righteous [2 Cor. 5:21]. 3 P a g e

4 Romans 3:20 28 By the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight 22 The righteousness of God [is revealed], through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe 23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 26 that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. 27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law. C. The Greek word justify in the NT (dikaioo) means to declare righteous [or not guilty], not become righteous [Rom. 3:20,26,28; 5:1; 8:30; 10:4,10; Gal. 2:16; 3:24]. The becoming righteous part of our salvation is called Sanctification. a. In Luke 7:29 it says that When they heard this all the people and the tax collectors justified [dikaioo] God, having been baptized with the baptism of John. Here the people did not make God to be righteous (which is impossible), but declared Him to be righteous. b. To be declared not guilty is God s declaration that though we still have the capacity to sin we are nevertheless righteous in His sight. D. John Murray, in Redemption Accomplished and Applied explains it this way: Regeneration is an act of God in us, justification is a judgment of God with respect to us. The distinction is like that of the distinction between the act of a surgeon and the act of a judge. The surgeon, when he removes an inward cancer, does something in us. That is not what a judge doeshe gives a verdict regarding our judicial status. If we are innocent he declares us accordingly The purity of the gospel is bound up with the recognition of this distinction. If justification is confused with regeneration or sanctification, then the door is opened for the perversion of the gospel at its center. Justification is still the article of the standing or falling of the Church. E. The foundational truth about Justification is that the righteousness of God the very quality of God s righteousness has been freely given to all sinners who repent and come to Jesus in faith. Romans 1:17 For in it [the gospel] the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith Romans 3:21 Now the righteousness of God apart from the law [earning it] is revealed F. There are two facets of God s righteousness towards us: Imputed and Imparted. 1. Imputed Righteousness: The moment we are born again, God gives us the gift of righteousness to empower us to live righteously. This is imputed righteousness, which gives us a new legal position before God [Romans 3 5]. It is instantaneous. 2. Imparted Righteousness: God also gives us imparted righteousness, which describes our living condition before God [Romans 6 8]. This happens progressively as we live in obedience to Jesus, walk in the Spirit, and put to death the deeds of the body [Rom. 8:5,13]. 4 P a g e

5 VI. SANCTIFICATION OUR LIVING CONDITION A. Paul taught that knowing our legal position (Justification) does not end the process of salvation [Phil. 2:12]. The righteousness of Jesus that was imputed to us at salvation must now be imparted to us through the sanctifying work of the Spirit. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 This is the will of God, your sanctification 2 Thessalonians 2:13 God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, B. Sanctification is the process by which we become free from sin and conformed to the image of Jesus. It is to become separate and set apart from sin unto God. Sanctification begins when we are born again and continues throughout our whole life [Rom. 6:11 14]. Romans 8:29 Whom He foreknew, He predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son 2 Corinthians 3:18 We all are being transformed into the same image [of Christ] from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. C. At salvation all of us move deeper into the sanctification process, however we do not become fully free from sin until we are made like Christ in glorification [1 John 1:8]. We need to die to self and become set apart from sin daily as we pursue the likeness of Jesus [Gal. 5:24, 1 Cor. 15:31]. Colossians 3:3 5 You died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God [justification]. 4 When Christ who is our life appears, the you also will appear with Him in glory [glorification]. 5 Therefore put to death your members [sanctification] which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. D. Many believers seek to jump from Justification (what God has done for them and their identity in Christ) to Glorification without dealing with the issues of their heart in Sanctification. We desire the free benefits of Calvary without having to die to the flesh and sinful desires. Luke 9:23 If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. a. The False Grace message promises the redemptive work of Christ (justification) without the need for death to self (sanctification). All one needs is to put faith in Jesus and you can experience effortless favor, wealth, and health. E. Though it is true that in Christ we are complete (positionally), we also need to be made complete (experientially). Colossians 2:10 You are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. 2 Corinthians 13:9,11 We pray, that you may be made complete. 11 Brethren become complete. 5 P a g e

6 a. The Bible teaches that as a Christian you are dead to sin [Rom. 6:11], and need to die to sin [Rom. 8:13]. You are crucified with Christ [Gal. 2:20], and need crucified with Christ [1 Cor. 15:31]. You are complete in Christ [Col. 2:10], and need to be made complete in Christ [2 Cor. 13:9,11]. You are a new creation [2 Cor. 5:17], and need to be made new (or re newed) every day [Eph. 4:22 24]. VII. LIVING IN VICTORY OVER SIN A. In Romans 6 Paul s gives us the clearest revelation of the way we walk in victory over sin. 1. First, we must KNOW that we are crucified with Jesus. When we came to Christ our old life and sins were nailed to the tree with Jesus. Now we are no longer our own. We are His possession. Romans 6:6 8 Knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died [with Christ] has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him 2. Second, we must RECKON ourselves dead to sin. We must see ourselves as those who have died to the dominion of sin and now are alive to God in Christ. Sin no longer has dominion over us [Rom. 6:14]. This is standing firm in our position in Christ regardless of how we think or feel. Romans 6:11 Likewise you also, reckon [see] yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. 3. Third, we must RESIST sin, temptation, Satan, and evil desires [James 4:7,8]. Reckoning ourselves dead to sin does not mean that we no longer have the capacity to sin or a sin nature. We must also actively resist. Resisting is where we choose to obey Jesus in all circumstances. Romans 6:12 13a Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. 13 And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin 4. Fourth, we must PURSUE [or present ourselves to] Jesus with wholeheartedness. It is not enough to resist sin and temptation, we must run into Jesus if we are to fully overcome. Our first call is to love God and seek to grow in the knowledge of Him. A radical pursuit of Jesus through prayer, obedience, and the Word releases more grace to overcome. Romans 6: 13b But present [offer] yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. 6 P a g e

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