There is much to cover, but here are a few key points about Grace I want present. All these following points are presented in strength in the New Testament and I believe they represent (not exhaustively) a Kingdom belief system. I will spend time writing about what I see as very clear New Testament teaching about the complete end of the Old Covenant, the end of the Law because of Jesus, and what living as empowered believers in the New Covenant might be like.
Our Key Points
This list could be a long one considering the great deal of wonderful life-changing teaching in the New Testament. No doubt we will be tempted to add to this list over time. However, here a short list of headlined beliefs that we want to emphasize here at UnfailingGrace.
- Jesus is genuinely LORD of ALL. All authority now resides with Jesus. (Heb 1)
- In the past, God spoke to us in various ways through the prophets, but now He speaks to us through His Son. (Heb 1)
- It really is all about Jesus! It’s not about Jesus and Moses.
- Because Jesus came, Faith came as well. We live entirely different now that Faith has come. (Gal 3)
- The coming of Jesus and the coming of Faith means we cannot live the same way as when Faith was not here.
- Grace is Jesus, restoring us to a relationship with God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit).
- Our expressed faith and belief in Jesus is what gives us eternal life and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
- Since we can call God “our Father” we can rightfully take our place “in heavenly places” with Jesus, with all the authority that Jesus gives.
- Since we belong to Jesus and marked with the Holy Spirit, we are enabled to know what the Father is doing and do what He is doing.
- The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Jesus, and He is also the Spirit of Grace. He is our “marker” which confirms our salvation and eternal life.
- The Holy Spirit is the very presence of God that empowers us to be righteous.
- The New Covenant represents a brand new government of Grace (Eph 3).
- The Old Covenant is no longer relevant for believers, it has been canceled. The Old Covenant is now counter-productive to the promise of access to God.
- In Jesus, we live with confident access to the “Most Holy Place”, we are empowered not only to be declared righteous but we also grow in righteousness because we are enabled by Grace.
- Grace is more than “unmerited favor”, it is the empowering Presence of God. ie. the same Grace that was in Jesus.
- We (believers) are no longer under the supervision of the Law (Gal 3:25)
- We (believers) are most definitely under the supervision of Jesus through the Holy Spirit.
- Leaning on Law for any form of righteousness is unbelief.
- Righteousness (justification and sanctification) is vitally important, but it is totally a gift from God based on faith.
Here are more leading points, all worthy of exploration over the next few months.
- Grace is so wonderful it seems too good to be true!
If Grace does not seem too wonderful to be true, it is not Grace. Grace in its true colors is a genuine and marvelous gift from God. He seems excessively kind. Jesus’ death and resurrection made it so.
- Grace needs to be presented with ‘no strings attached’.
Anything added to Grace means that Grace is not Grace anymore. It’s all Grace or it’s no Grace.
- It is God’s goodness and kindness that leads people to repentance and to Jesus.
God has always been the same. Jesus said He came to reveal the Father.
Jesus is always good and kind. So is the Father. He has never changed. His kindness will draw people to Him.
- The constitution of the government of God has changed since Jesus’ resurrection and the coming of the Holy Spirit.
God has always wanted a people who belong to Him and are holy and righteous. That was true in the Old Covenant under Law, and it is true now under the New Covenant and not under Law. The old constitution was Law, but now that is obsolete and we are under a New Constitution – the Administration of Grace (Eph 3).
- The promises made to Abraham still stand and are still available to people of the same faith.
The point Paul was making in Galatians was that all people who exercised faith are children of Abraham. Abraham lived before Law, exercised faith, and God accredited him as being righteous. It’s the same today.
- God still wants a people of God, and people of righteousness.
Under Law righteousness is impossible. With Grace and the Holy Spirit, righteousness is given freely and believers are empowered to be righteous.
- Grace is better defined as the ’empowering presence of God’.
Saying that Grace is ‘unmerited favor’ alone makes nonsense of New Covenant Grace. The Grace that was in Jesus was not ‘unmerited favor’, it was definitely God’s empowering presence. It’s the same Grace given to all believers.
- The New Covenant is a new and fresh authority of God and does not require the authority of Law to back it up.
The Holy Spirit is, in fact, God. He is God’s authority on earth now that Jesus has ascended. The power and authority in the New Covenant is the Holy Spirit. Now that He ‘is in town’, Law is not necessary and is, in fact, obsolete.
- The Law, otherwise called The Torah or Mosaism, is no longer in authority over believers.
This point will be made many times. It is clearly stated in the New Testament.
- The Law is still in authority but it is not for the righteous but for unbelievers.
Paul, writing to Timothy, stated that the Law ‘was made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful..’ etc. (1 Tim 1:8-11)
- The Ten Commandments is now a ‘ministry of death’ compared to the Holy Spirit’s ‘ministry of life’.
I didn’t say this, the Apostle Paul did in 2 Corinthian 3. He specifically mentions ‘that which written on tablets of stone’ meaning the Ten Commandments. He goes on to say in the same chapter that whenever Moses is read there is a veil that covers the heart and a dullness that affects the mind. Tough words, but true!
- There is no command to love in the Ten Commandments, it is simply not there. However, the love that comes as the fruit of the Holy Spirit totally fulfills every requirement originally demanded by Law.
‘Nuff said. Love cannot come from Law but from the Holy Spirit. Having a motivation of love and acting in love makes the need for Law irrelevant.
- Fulfilling every requirement through love does not then place the Ten Commandment back in authority. They are totally useless and redundant.
- The Law had its time to be in authority. That time ended at the cross when Faith came. (Gal 3)
- The Law cannot bring righteousness in any form. Its primary purpose is to constantly condemn, a job it does very well.
Romans speaks very strongly of the need for us to die to Law. We do this by believing in Jesus and allowing ourselves to be ‘buried’ and ‘raised’ with Him. Having done so we have no further obligation to Law. (Rom 6-8)
- The Law is not based on faith and anything not based on faith is unbelief. Unbelief is sin.
The need for faith and faith alone is paramount in New Testament teaching. Everything depends on faith. Faith in Jesus gives us the same standing with God as Abraham had. Needing Law to ‘back up’ faith is unbelief. Unbelief, of course, is sin.
- The Law forces us to consider that righteousness can only come by faith alone. Righteousness is a gift from God.
Interesting one this. Nobody can keep the Law perfectly. The Law demands that anyone who starts keeping part of the Law must do all it else you are under a curse. Even Christians don’t demand that we keep all the Law. The Law states that anyone who does not keep all the Law is condemned. There is only one solution. Accept God’s Grace and His free righteousness.
- The Law (including the Ten Commandments) was a temporary insertion into the governance timeline (added at Sinai and remained in power until Faith/Jesus came).
The giving of the Law was God’s good idea. It was the best thing available when there was no Holy Spirit available to all. However, it was a temporary solution until Jesus came. (Galatians)
- Now that Faith has come we are no longer under the supervision of authority of the Law.
This point has been stated previously, but it is an important point to make. Faith means we don’t need Law and it also means that we have chosen to trust the Holy Spirit for His guidance and empowerment.
- We are now under the authority and governance of the Holy Spirit (God within us).
Absolutely! The Holy Spirit is essential to our faith life in God. he is the One who enables us to be righteousness. Impossible under Law but entirely possible with the Spirit.
- The Empowering Presence of God (Grace through the Holy Spirit) is fully able to bring about righteousness.
We are justified and sanctified through faith because of Grace. This is a strong New Testament teaching. No equivocation about it. Only the Holy Spirit is capable of enabling righteousness. The Law cannot bring righteousness but only condemnation. It is false teaching to suggest that Grace needs to balanced by Law.
- Being free from the Law does not mean we are lawless and without discipline.
We actually are enabled to live with much higher standards than required by Law. Very true!
- Grace solves any identity issues we have in our relationship with God.
- Grace re-connects and reconciles us to God. He is our Father, and we are His sons and daughters. The Holy Spirit (God) dwells within us. He (the Holy Spirit) is a Guarantee of our inheritance. It’s wonderful and powerful news!