Daily In Christ

Month: September 2010

Does Blessing Precede Obedience?

By Mark VanOuse

A friend of mine raised a very good question: Does blessing really precede obedience?

The question came up in the context of my saying that one of the greatest things I’ve learned in my Christian life is the vast difference between the Old Covenant and the New Covenant. How that, as Christians, we are not under the Old Covenant of Law, blessings or curses given based on our performance, but under the New Covenant of grace, granting us blessings from God based on Christ’s performance. “In other words”, I said, “under the New Covenant, the blessing precedes our obedience. We obey because we are blessed in Christ (Eph 1:3), not the other way around.”

That statement threw him off. He emailed me and said, “Why is this ‘God blesses us, and then we respond in obedience’ idea not more clear in Scripture? You would think God would want it to be clear. I would like to hear your answer to that.”

Here, then, is my response: (more…)

I Don’t Need the Law, I Need The Lord!

By Mark VanOuse

A truly righteous man says, “I don’t need the law, I need The Lord.”

[8] But we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully,[9] knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and for sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers . . .  (1 Timothy 1:8-9, NKJV)

Did you know that a truly righteous man will actually run from the law?  Why?  Because the law places the demand on his “righteousness” (which is no righteousness at all), not God’s righteousness. Philippians 3:9 makes the point quite clearly:

not having my own righteousness, which is from the law . . . (more…)

Being Ignorant of GOD’s Righteousness

For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God.” (Romans 10:3 NKJV).

Most Christians, like the Jews of Paul’s day, are ignorant of GOD’s righteousness.  They don’t understand God’s GIFT of righteousness (Rom 5:17).

(more…)