The truth about Grace (Truth & Consequences)

bigstock-Asian-Girl-Looking-Up-8841Let’s talk about God’s grace and mercy.

Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:16
Take note that we are to go before the throne of grace BEFORE we sin, not afterwards. It is this grace that prevents us from sinning.

When we sin, the word of God gives us a promise that nullifies guilt, shame and condemnation:
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:1
However, consider the fact that many of God’s promises contain conditions and qualifications. God qualifies who this particular promise of “no condemnation” applies to “those who walk after the spirit, and not the flesh”

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
We would do well to pay attention to the “if’s” in God’s word. In this verse, he gives a condition for forgiveness. We must confess our sin to receive forgiveness.
A couple other verses to seriously consider is the confession of faith that we make when we invite Jesus into our life.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. Romans 10:9
The words “if” and “and” are key to this confession. It is even clarified in Romans 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. This is profound because the believing is unto righteousness (In Greek the word is dikaiosune, which literally means equity of character. Equity of character is to possess all good qualities in perfection and perfect balance)and speaking (confessing that we are sinners and need Jesus in our life) brings salvation.

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:4
What we must remember is that the righteousness of the law (consequences of our actions) is fulfilled even when we have confessed and received forgiveness. So even though we receive God’s forgiveness, it does not mean that we escape the consequences of our actions. Some of these consequences are immediate and destructive and some of them are spiritual and cost us the blessings that would have come through our obedience.

Sadly, many Christians find it easier to rely on grace using excuses like, “God already knew I was going to sin before I did, and he has it covered.” What they neglect to fully realize is that we are always given a choice, and relying on grace to cover premeditated sin is just an excuse – one that God will not tolerate.

What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. Romans 6:15

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Matthew 7:22,23

Even though God knows our weaknesses, he also knows that he has provided ways to avoid temptation and sin through his word, prayer, fasting and reliance on him to deliver us from ourselves.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you”. James 4:7

There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
1 Corinthians 10:13

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10
We are not to succumb to sin and ask for forgiveness later, we are to rejoice in overcoming the temptation of sin by surrendering ourselves to God in weakness by confessing that we are weak and asking for his help (in advance). This is what makes us strong and leads to living a truly righteous life.

For we are glad, when we are weak, and ye are strong: and this also we wish, even your perfection. 2 Corinthians 13:9

The lack of Christian morality to heed the word of God concerning holiness is causing Christians to be compromising, complacent and more accepting of sin. Basically, taking grace for granted.

Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. 1 Peter 1:16 [also Leviticus 19:2]

I have heard sinners and believers alike refer to people as “holier than thou”. First of all, the word thou means “you”. If I am striving to live a holy life and you are not, then guess what? I am holier than thou, and I’m not going to make apologies for wanting to be righteous before God and man and sacrificing the things and ways of the world to do so. Too many Christians act as if being holy is impossible. Well, check out what the word of God says:

But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. Matthew 19:26

Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. Mark 9:23

And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible. Mark 10:27

Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: Colossians 1:28

Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:21

It is true that man in and of himself cannot be perfect, but in Christ we can be. God would not ask us to be something that was impossible for us to be because he is not a man that he should lie, and his desire for us to be holy requires work, dedication, and an ernest desire on our part. To accomplish holiness, we have to make the right choices, and as believers our decisions should be rooted in the word of God because that is where God has given us instructions to accomplish our task. The bottom line is that we have to want holiness more than we want to please our flesh. Yes, through grace we are forgiven, but when you have to ask for forgiveness over and over for the same thing, what does that tell God? It might tell him that we have not truly repented because we keep returning to the scene of the crime.

Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee. John 5:14

Jesus spoke very directly about how he would know if we love him.

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. John 14:23

Now I ask you, if the Father and Son have made their abode in you (live inside you), along with the holy spirit (which guides us into all truth according to John 16:13)how can sin abide? The answer is through our disobedience and rebellion against the God that we claim to love.

Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:12

Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Philippians 3:14,15

Like the Apostle Paul, I do not claim to be perfect or without sin. On the contrary, this very document was written under the conviction of the holy spirit in response to a fall. However, I thank God that in humility I confess my sins and share that my ernest desire for holiness does not allow me to use grace as a balm to cover blatant disobedience. My desire is still to live a life of purity and holiness, and although I accept the forgiveness that comes with grace, I am also keenly aware of the sacrifice for disobedience. The things God has promised me come with conditions, and when I disobey, I lose something and the law of righteousness will take affect. It is not a punishment from God. It is the consequences of my actions. It is the law of righteousness.

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
There’s that “if” again.

How could I possibly boast, as some do, about the power of God that works within me when I have not used that same power to keep myself from sinning. How could I be a credible witness when I can teach it, preach it, and instruct others, but cannot do the same before God? I’m speaking to leaders now. It is not enough for us to keep sinning and repenting and relying on grace while we try to tell others how to live. Jesus spoke of people like that. He often prefaced God’s judgment of hypocrites with “Woe to you” [Matthew 23]

And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. Matthew 6:5

A repentant heart is what I look for in a leader. An honest, truthful, sincere heart that loves God more than their own pride. For how can a man or woman of God be a credible witness for Christ if their life does not line up with the word of God that they speak from their own mouths, and they cannot admit it when they are wrong.

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. Matthew 12:34

So, precious sheep, beware of false prophets. Anyone can quote scripture, but listen carefully to the spirit, and watch their lives. Does it line up?
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 1 John 4:1

I pray that I am known as a woman of God whose life lines up with what I preach and that when I am wrong, I am never too proud to admit it.

God bless you,
The Prophetic Scribe

Arletia Mayfield is the visionary founder of TPS Publications, a company committed to offering primarily digital, downloadable resources and tools for ministry. These resources are designed to creatively convey the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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Arletia Mayfield Bio

Arletia Mayfield aka The Prophetic Scribe is the visionary founder of TPS Publications, a company committed to offering primarily digital, downloadable resources and tools for ministry.

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