After over 65 years of ministry, we have developed the top 27 questions people ask us so we would like to share these questions each week for our weekly blog and share the answers as a resource for you all to use in your ministry, churches, and family.
Top ? #26 If I am Saved by Grace Does That Mean I Can Live in any Way I Want?
Answer: No. The fact that we are saved by God’s grace apart from good works and that our salvation is secure in Christ does not give us a license to sin or live in a way that ignores God’s revealed will for our lives.
The Bible clearly teaches that we receive eternal life as a gift of God apart from any works that we do (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; Romans 4:5). It also tells us that once we are saved we have been sealed with the Holy Spirit and that nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:13; Romans 8:38-39). Therefore we know that even if we sin after we have become believers in Christ we will not lose our salvation.
One of the most common responses to this truth among people that reject the gospel of God’s grace is to say that if it is not our works that save us or keep us saved then we can live in any way that we want. Such ideas are a natural response of our sinful nature and are often used by Satan to keep a person from believing the simple message of salvation through faith alone in the death of Christ. People find they cannot accept that God can save us and keep us secure in Christ by grace alone and that our sins cannot separate us from God.
The Apostle Paul was faced with this accusation throughout his ministry. Those that opposed Paul’s preaching of salvation by grace apart from the works of the Mosaic Law accused him of saying that people can just go on sinning, thus magnifying God’s grace because it gives Him more to forgive.
Why not say (as we are being slanderously reported as saying and as some claim that we say) “Let us do evil that good may result”? Their condemnation is deserved. Romans 3:8
What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Romans 6:1-2
Paul obviously never taught that grace was a license for sin. Romans chapter 6 is where he develops his theological argument for why we should live for the glory of God after we have been saved. He teaches that when we believe the gospel our old sinful nature is dead and we have been identified with the death, burial and resurrection of Christ through spiritual baptism. If we are dead to sin and alive to righteousness then we must live that way.
You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. Romans 6:18
Some of the most important verses which speak of how those saved by grace should live are Titus 2:11-14.
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good
These verses tell us that someone that has experienced God’s grace in a real way is not going to want to live in an unrighteous and sinful manner. Rather, that grace is going to instruct the individual to live in a way that glorifies God. A saved person that sins will continue to be saved. His disobedience will not be able to separate him from God’s love. However, if God’s Spirit is within an individual He will not allow the person to desire to continue deliberately sinning without a strong sense of conviction that what he is doing is wrong. If that person continues to live in an ungodly manner, that person either has a “seared conscience” or is not truly saved.
Please read the following verses: Colossians 3:5-17; Ephesians 4:1-2; Romans 12:1-2; 1 Peter 1:16; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8.