Theology and Apologetics Roundtable: January 2012

Monday, January 9, 2012

How Does the Grace of God Satisfy the Soul?

Simple…by setting it free. The Christian doctrines of grace and justification are the very doctrines that set the means of salvation apart from any other cult or world religion. Christianity is the only belief system that doesn’t require any form of merit on our part to save our souls or free it from the bondage of sin and eternal death. No other religion or faith in the world apart from Christianity can proclaim such a message.

I find Romans 8 to be an incredible chapter that answers the question of how God’s grace satisfies the soul. God through Jesus Christ sets the soul free from enslavement to the Law and He sets the soul free from the condemnation of the Law. Upholding the Law is the very thing that stands between us and an eternal relationship with the God of the universe. If we break the Law one time…just one time, we’re doomed. Our attempt to adhere to the Law was never made to set us free from eternal damnation. It was set to condemn us and show us our incapability to follow the Law to the very letter. God knew this. Through His loving grace, He already had a plan set in motion to introduce man to a coming Savior.

In Roman’s chapter 8, Paul provides the believer with the “therefore” of no condemnation. He declares that the Law can no longer claim the believer. “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death” (Romans 8:2 NASB). Secondly, Paul declares that the Law can no longer condemn the believer. “For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,” (Romans 8:3 NASB).

Just as we have the law of double jeopardy in the judicial system, the condemnation of the Law fell on Christ who became our substitute and His death on the cross paid the penalty of the sins of all man in its totality. Therefore, man can no longer be condemned by the Law for the same penalty which Christ has already paid in full.

            Thirdly, the Law can no longer control the believer. “so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit” (Romans 8:4 NASB). The believer is now under the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit to walk in obedience to God’s will. There is no merit anyone can do in their own strength to measure up to the holiness God requires of us. The believer finds confidence in the power of the Holy Spirit to live out righteousness. “For it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phil 2:13 NASB).

            God’s grace, the cross of Christ, satisfies the soul of any person who comes to Jesus Christ in faith alone and He sets that soul free from condemnation, death, and eternal separation from Him.