by Pastor Greg Laurie
The Key to Holiness
"Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more kindness and forgiveness? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?" (Romans 6:1-2)
Sadly, there are many believers today who live with a misconception that they must do something to earn God's approval. When they have had a good week and have been reading their Bibles or doing certain good deeds for the Lord, they feel that God will be pleased. But when they have had a hard week, when they have fallen, when they have sinned, they think God is not pleased with them. Sometimes they believe they shouldn't even go to church or read the Bible. "Why bother?" they think. "God is not pleased with me. I don't have His favor. It would be hypocritical for me to do that." All the while, they don't realize they have God's unconditional favor and love regardless of what they do. But that is not a license to sin. It is an incentive to respond to Him in love.
If, as believers, we can truly get hold of what this means, if we can understand that it is not a license to live as we please, then it should be an incentive for us to serve the Lord, love Him, and show gratitude toward the One who loves us unconditionally, knowing us for what we are. An understanding of this truth can revolutionize our lives.
In some people's estimation, holy living, which is keeping rules and regulations, will bring salvation. But holy living, which we are not capable of to start with, will not bring salvation. However, salvation will produce holy living. If you are truly saved, it will result in changes in your lifestyle.
Copyright (c) 2004 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved. Scripture quotation is taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright (c) 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.