Grace, Faith and Love

by Richard Billingsley
4/25/2015 (updated 5/1/2015)

Today I want to highlight some scriptures that everyone should be familiar with, but most ignore the importance of.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NLTse)
All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.

Paul tells us that ALL scripture is inspired by God and shows us what is right or wrong with how we should live.  God uses the scriptures to prepare and equip us to live godly lives.

But what most people don’t realize is that this is only part of Paul’s warning, which ends in 2 Tim.4:3-4:

2 Timothy 4:3-4 (NLTse)
For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will reject the truth and chase after myths.

When we bring these two scriptures into the last days we see those who teach what people want to hear.  I fully believe in salvation by grace, but there are those who teach that it doesn’t matter what we do after we are saved because the grace of God will cover us.  That is true, if our heart is to serve God and please Him.  But some, those who seek after their “own desires” are only seeking justification to sin.  These people have a false faith and are going to find out after it is too late that they have deceived themselves.  

Ephesians 2:8 tells us that we are saved by the grace of God through our faith in Him.  It is a gift from God so that we can’t boast that it was our own ability.  But what does this mean?  If we are saved through faith, then that requires a response to that faith.  Faith without works is dead and Faith works by LOVE, so there is effort we must show that we LOVE Him and because of that Faith we do those things that please Him.  Therefore, if someone tries to use grace as an excuse to live a life of sin they are deceiving themselves and really don’t have the grace they think they have.  

Please note:  I am not talking about someone who LOVES the Lord and is seeking to please Him, then stumbles and sins.  No!  Because they have the heart and LOVE to seek after God they are doing the best they can, if they stumble the grace of God protects them.  I am talking about those who habitually sin never giving it a second thought and think they can live a life of sin and do whatever they please and think they will be saved.  Those are the ones who have become self deceived and seek after teachers who give them excuses to justify their actions.  They have heard the truth but willfully choose to live a lifestyle of sin, but their judgment is mentioned in:

Hebrews 10:26-29 (NLTse)
Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. 27 There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies. 28 For anyone who refused to obey the law of Moses was put to death without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy (grace) to us.

These individuals were at one time saved because they had received the saving grace that God has given them, but they turned their backs on the truth to pursue the lusts of the flesh.  In Eastern culture there is a covenant custom, where the host pours blood at the threshold of the house in order to make a covenant with the one entering.  When the one entering sees the blood they must enter the house by stepping over the blood as they enter.  But if they step in the blood or trample that blood they have insulted the spirit of grace and become an enemy of the one who has offered them a covenant and are sentenced to death because they have not honored the blood covenant.  

I will say this again.  These are people who are not repentant in the things they have done.  If someone’s heart is crying out repenting to God for forgiveness thinking they have done this.  They have already been forgiven and are NOT guilty.  It is for those who are unwilling to repent that are held accountable to this judgment.

Hebrews 6:4-6 (NLTse)
For it is impossible to bring back to repentance those who were once enlightened—those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the power of the age to come— 6 and who then turn away from God. It is impossible to bring such people back to repentance; by rejecting the Son of God, they themselves are nailing him to the cross once again and holding him up to public shame.

Fulfilling all these things is very difficult to do for most Christians.  While we have all tasted the goodness of the word of God, very few have shared in the power of the age to come, and as one who has experienced all these things turning my back on God is unthinkable.  Such people never had a REAL personal relationship with Christ and while they were offered salvation they rejected it and are counted as the servant who buried his gift in Matthew 25:14-30 and is cast into outer darkness because he never knew his master

Matthew 25:28-30 (NLTse)
“Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver. 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. 30 Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. ‘

They may think they are Christians, but if they don’t have true faith and live in a LOVE relationship with Jesus, they will not receive the grace they think they have and will one day find that they have deceived themselves into outer darkness.  They refused to use the scriptures to learn what is right and wrong and how to live the way God has called them to live and will unfortunately pay the price for their actions.  

We must seek to remain in His LOVE at all times, especially with the events coming on the world.  For the enemies goal is to push everyone into becoming offended and if we allow this into our lives the enemy has gained control in our lives.  

Galatians 5:19-23 (NLTse)
When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear:sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives:love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self- control. There is no law against these things!

This is why it is so important that we focus our hearts on being in the LOVE of Christ and why the message of Grace, Faith and LOVE is so important, because we are in the last hour and those who don’t wake up and realize the truth will not be prepared for what it going to happen to them and will be left behind.  Let us all turn our hearts toward God and share of LOVE fest, feeding on His word and using in our lives on a daily basis.  Lift praise unto our Lord Jesus Christ who has given us all thing to enjoy.

Live in God’s LOVE!

Richard Billingsley