- The Text
- The Chapter
- The Confession
- They who are united to Christ, effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection, are also farther sanctified, really and personally,
- through the same virtue, by his Word and Spirit dwelling in them;
- the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed,
- and the several lusts of it are more and more weakened and mortified
- and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces
- to the practice of all true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord
John 3:14–15 (CSB) “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.
They who are united to Christ, effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection, are also farther sanctified, really and personally, through the same virtue, by his Word and Spirit dwelling in them; the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed, and the several lusts of it are more and more weakened and mortified, and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces, to the practice of all true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.
They who are united to Christ, effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection, are also farther sanctified, really and personally,
Acts 20:32 (CSB) “And now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you an inheritance among all who are sanctified.
Romans 6:5–6 (CSB) For if we have been united with him in the likeness of his death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of his resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be rendered powerless so that we may no longer be enslaved to sin,
The Romans 8:30 passage cannot be overly emphasized enough:
Romans 8:30 (CSB) And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; and those he justified, he also glorified.
Many have stated, "No wait... why didn't Paul include the process of sanctification within this statement?" That is because he just mentioned in the last verse:
Romans 8:29 (CSB) For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.
It is God who will not only elect his people, call his people, and justify his people but he will sanctify his people. How does he do this?
John 17:17 (CSB) Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.
Ephesians 3:16–19 (CSB) I pray that he may grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with power in your inner being through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know Christ’s love that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
1 Thessalonians 5:21–23 (CSB) but test all things. Hold on to what is good. Stay away from every kind of evil. Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely. And may your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
By the almighty power of the Holy Spirit, he will conform us to the image of his only begotten Son. The same Son, who shed his blood, have perfectly ransomed his people from their sins, once and for all time through his cross.
Romans 6:14 (CSB) For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under the law but under grace.
Colossians 2:13-15 (CSB) And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, he made you alive with him and forgave us all our trespasses. He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us, and has taken it away by nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and disgraced them publicly; he triumphed over them in him.
God makes the covenant of grace with his Son to save his people. (Think of it like this: Almighty Promise Perfect Keeper made a Promise with the Almighty Promise Perfect Keeper to save his people.) God sent his Son to do what only God can do: Perfection. And real Holy Perfection--not the watered down perfection that mankind overuses. No. And everything that Christ did is Perfect: obeyed His holy law, did not even know sin, loved God perfectly with his perfect being and loved his neighbor as he loved himself perfectly. He died perfect. He rose again because he was perfect. And he was ascended to the right hand of God perfectly because he perfectly carried out and completely fulfilled the first covenant and every covenent thereafter.
So, within the children of God, is the dominion of sin within us completely destroyed? The proof is not in us but in the perfect works of Christ.
Galatians 5:24 (CSB) Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
"But, but, but," you might object, "Christians are not perfect. Christians sin all the time" And you would be right.
Let me not address unbelievers who would object and question this. Let me address to the believers who love the Lord but see the sin in their lives and cry out, "How can I be saved when I keep sinning!"
My beloved, it is because you see your sin and you wage war against it is only because of the Triune God dwelling in you and made his home you. Do you get that?
You are only crying out just like every single child of God upon being saved by God.
1 Chronicles 29:14-15 (CSB) But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? For everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your own hand. For we are aliens and temporary residents in your presence as were all our ancestors. Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope.
Psalms 22:6 (CSB) But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by people.
Psalms 51:3-5 (CSB) For I am conscious of my rebellion,
and my sin is always before me.
Against you — you alone — I have sinned
and done this evil in your sight.
So you are right when you pass sentence;
you are blameless when you judge.
Indeed, I was guilty when I was born;
I was sinful when my mother conceived me.
Jeremiah 17:9 (CSB) The heart is more deceitful than anything else, and incurable — who can understand it?
Matthew 8:8 (CSB) But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed.
Matthew 15:27 (CSB) “Yes, Lord,” she said, “yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table!”
Luke 18:13 (CSB) “But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even raise his eyes to heaven but kept striking his chest and saying, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner! ’
1 Corinthians 15:9 (CSB) For I am the least of the apostles, not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.
And that same Apostle who wrote the majority of the books of the New Testament, Paul, is the same Apostle who cried out:
Romans 7:24 (CSB) What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?
Colossians 1:11 (CSB) being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, so that you may have great endurance and patience, joyfully
Dearest believer, you doubt of your salvation because you struggle mightily with sin and you feel that sin crouches, ready to destroy you? That only means you belong with the rest of the children of God. You belong prominently in Hebrews 11--alongside with whom we call, "The Hall of Fame of Faith."
How can we dare to be confident and sure?
2 Corinthians 7:1 (CSB) So then, dear friends, since we have these promises, let us cleanse ourselves from every impurity of the flesh and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
Hebrews 12:14 (CSB) Pursue peace with everyone, and holiness—without it no one will see the Lord.
Because we have the Christ! We possess him because he holds fast to us!
John 10:27–30 (CSB) My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”
Oh close and blessed union! Justified by God, accepted in Christ, condemnation there cannot be. I stand in the Divine presence as Joshua stood before the Lord, or as the woman stood before the Savior, charged, accused, guilty; but I am in the presence of him who, though now he sits upon the throne as my Judge, once hung upon the cross as my Savior. And, investing me with his own spotless robe, he proceeds to pronounce the sentence- "NO CONDEMNATION!"
"These things write I unto you that your joy may be full."
Octavius Winslow. No Condemnation in Christ Jesus. 191.
Our God is most glorious. Only God would come up with a redemption so simple and so perfect. We want to tack on more laws and more stipulations and more back breaking works just to prove we are salvation.
"You have done too many bad things" - You are right. I have outsinned everyone in this room. And yet, "the grace of the Lord overflowed for me in the faith and love that can only be found in my Lord Jesus Christ. This saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am worst of them all."
"You have done no good things" - you are absolutely correct. But as the doctor does not come for the healthy but the sick, so too the Son of Man came not for the righteous but the unrighteous.
"You are not strong enough. You are too weak." You are right. Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so. Little ones to him belong. I am weak but he is strong.
You doubt God has saved you? God doesn't keep the kids who are have lots of faith.
The gulf between the unbeliever and the ones with the smallest faith is abysmally infinite. However, there is no gap between the ones with the smallest faith and the arms and the heart of the loving Savior.
Because that faith doesn't come from within us but it was God who gave us that to faith to believe and trust his only begotten Son.
Praise be to his name!