What It Means to be a Christian

What it means to be a Christian:  There is no forgiveness without repentance.  There is no salvation without surrender.  There is no life without death.  There is no believing without committing.

– Idleman, Kyle; Not a Fan: Becoming a Completely Committed Follower of Jesus; Zondervan; copyright 2011; Grand Rapids, MI; Kindle Edition; page 34

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We Stand in Constant Need

So even after we become Christians, our thoughts words, motives, deeds and affections need the constant cleansing of Christ’s blood and the forgiveness that comes our way for free.  While it is gloriously true that there is nowhere in your life the Spirit has not infiltrated, it is equally true that there is no part of any Christian in this life that is free of sin

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 2573

Law vs. Grace

Just as it is difficult to experience forgiveness without some knowledge of what you have done wrong, so it is difficult toi understand Grace apart from the Law.  If the Law is the first word, Grace is the last.  Listen closely: The Law exposes [us] while Grace exonerates [us].  The Law diagnoses, but Grace delivers.  The Law accuses, Grace acquits.  The Law condemns the best of us, while Grace saves the worst of us.  The Law says “cursed,” Grace says “Blessed.”  The Law says “slave,” Grace says “son.”  The Law says “guilty,” Grace says “forgiven.”  The Law can break a hard heart, but only Grace can heal one.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 1137

Seven Things Forgiveness Is…

Seven things that forgiveness is.

1. Forgiveness is canceling a debt owed to you.

2. Forgiveness is removing the control your offender has every you.

3. Forgiveness is giving a gift to your fender and yourself.

4. Forgiveness is forsaking revenge.

5. Forgiveness is leaving ultimate justice and God’s hand.

6. Forgiveness is often an ongoing process.

7. Forgiveness is wanting good for your offender.

– Driscoll, Mark; Who Do You Think You Are? Finding Your True Identity in ChristThomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, copyright 2013; Page 164-65

The Funeral is the Prelude to the Unending Wedding Reception

Apart from God’s grace, the gravity of our sin never reaches above the level of shame and our happiness never crosses the threshold of momentary pleasure.  Christ’s kingdom, however, is full of mirth, because of the joy of forgiveness.  The funeral is prelude to the unending wedding reception.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 214

Some Still Struggle to the Point of Despair

Even in broader evangelical circles, some Christians struggle to the point of despair over whether the quality and degree of their repentance is adequate to be forgiven as if repentance were the ground of forgiveness and the former could be measured by the intensity of emotion and resolve.

However, according to Scripture it is not our tears but Christ’s blood that satisfies God’s judgment and establishes peace with God (Romans 5:1, 8-11)

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 120

Now That’s Evangelism

And insofar as I do “deal with it” (allow him to love me by accepting his gift of forgiveness – free sins), something strange happens to my attitude toward them.  I find myself (despite myself) loving the other sinners, robbers and scoundrels who need love as much as I do.  And when I let it show in places where one doesn’t expect a Christian to show up, its called evangelism.

– Brown, Steve; Three Free Sins: God’s Not Mad At YouHoward Books;  New York, copyright 2012; Kindle Edition; Location 2391