Now a Sinner Saved By Grace?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by JonC δοῦλος, Jun 28, 2015.

  1. JonC

    JonC
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    In our efforts to deal with certain sins, it seems to me that we have wandered from the Truth and into error concerning our own nature. Paul tells us that as they (the world) is so some of us were. Yet I cannot count how many times I’ve heard “us” (regenerate believers) referred to as identical to them - save a belief in Christ. What bothers me is that I cannot find this anywhere in Scripture, yet it prevails in Christian discourse (at least in my experience). Scripture presents us as being reborn, sanctified, justified, set aside as holy. It presents us as being freed from sin, able to do the right, and calls us to purity. Never are we described as “sinners saved by grace.” We were sinners who have been saved by grace. It just seems to me that we (believers) too readily identify with sin instead of Christ. I am starting to wonder if we do not share some guilt in the advancement of certain sins within our culture.
     
  2. Revmitchell

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    1. Do you still sin?

    2. Are you saved by grace?

    Recognizing that we are still sinners saved by grace is appropriate. We are not yet fully redeemed. We only have a hope and a promise of a future redemption at this point. Since this is true we are still battling with sin. We still have a sinful nature, we still have sin to deal with and none of us believers walk in a sinless state. Therefore, we are nothing more than sinners saved by grace.
     
  3. JonC

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    1. Yes
    2. Yes

    I agree that we still struggle with sin. But as I read Scripture I can find none that classify the believers as "sinners." Instead there is a strong separation. Sinners are not new creations freed from sin who may sometimes fail and sin. Sinners are those mastered by sin who are incapable of doing the right because they are not redeemed. Make no mistake, we are now redeemed. We are now saved. We are now new creatures, spiritually alive in Christ and clothed with His righteousness. But yes, we still sin.

    The difference is that we are not "sinners" by biblical definition. We are not mastered by sin, and we do not by necessity sin. We sin out of weakness (our former nature, the flesh, the "old man"), not like those who have not been regenerated/reborn. We are not sinners. We were sinners who have been saved by grace.
     
  4. Revmitchell

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    You are trying to compare a theological designation about our positional righteousness to common vernacular. The truth is both are correct and there is no conflict.
     
  5. annsni

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    I think it is good for the world to understand that we don't see ourselves as any "better" than them because we are Christians and even Paul said that he was the chief of sinners. We ARE sinners saved by grace and we shouldn't even try to prove God's goodness by how "holy" we are but how "holy" HE is.
     
  6. JonC

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    Actually I'm asking for a passage in the New Testament that terms believers as "sinners." There are plenty of verses that present sinners in contrast to the children of God, but I have found none that suggest we identify with our sin. I'm not really saying that you are wrong, Rev, just that we have concentrated on our sinfulness to unbiblical proportions in extending love to the lost. Scripture really does (explicitly) present a dichotomy between the lost and the saved as a people. I think that this distinction has been diminished in the contemporary church.
     
  7. Revmitchell

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    With that said I now understand fully what your intent is here. The problem arises in how we present that. It could very easily come across as holier than thou. I understand your concern and agree with it. In fact the down playing of holiness as believers has lead us to believe it is not even necessary to try to love holy lives.
     
  8. JonC

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    Yet we, ourselves, are called to holiness. We are "freed" from the slavery of sin in a way that the lost are not. We are to present our bodies as a living sacrifice (holy and acceptable to God) which is our reasonable service of worship and which those without Christ cannot. We are spiritually alive whereas those who are lost are not. We are indwelt by the Holy Spirit in a manner that is impossible for the lost.

    I understand what you are saying, and it is certainly not "us" that is the difference. But still, once we are saved we are something different. For years I've heard the Church presented as a "hospital for sinners." Yet I have yet to find support for this kind of thinking in Scripture. We are a sanctified people (in Christ....which is the difference). My point is that we should not consider ourselves sinners but saints, and we should hold each other to that standard of holiness (that standard which we will, admittedly, fail to achieve completely in this life - but one for which we are being fitted).
     
    #8 JonC, Jun 28, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 28, 2015
  9. plain_n_simple

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    The Christian who knows Christ, knows that Christ has entered in once for all into the Holy of Holies, having found an eternal redemption. There He appears before the face of God for us, not in order that He should offer Himself often, since He would then have been obliged to suffer often, which could not be, but now once in the consummation of the ages He has been manifested for the putting away of sin by the sacrifice of Himself. ( Heb. 9; 24-26)

    The Holy Spirit follows it up by declaring its revealed effect - in contrast with those under the shadows of the Law. The sacrifices of the Law were offered continuously year by year, unable as they were to perfect those who approached. If they had been able to perfect, “would they not indeed have ceased being offered, on account of the worshippers once purged having no longer any conscience of sins?”, (Heb. 10: 2).

    How different for the Christian! What the Law could not do, Christ’s work has done: so perfect is the cleansing of the worshippers that they have no longer any conscience of sins. A "sinner saved by grace" has not yet understood this. God forbid they are ministers still needing milk.
     
  10. annsni

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    Did not Paul call himself the chief of sinners?
     
  11. SovereignGrace

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    Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst.[1 Pet. 1:15]
     
  12. quantumfaith

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    :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  13. quantumfaith

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    :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:
     
  14. JonC

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    I think that the context of the passage is that Jesus came to save sinners. Paul demonstrates this by pointing out his sinfulness while also implying his aposteship.

    Sent from my Z830 using Tapatalk
     
  15. JonC

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    What I mean is that we too often ignore 1st Corinthians 6: 11

    Sent from my Z830 using Tapatalk
     
  16. JamesL

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    JonC,

    You are onto something I started studying about 12 years ago. And you are 100% correct. The gist:

    Sin is not only behavior, sin is a disease.

    1 - There is a distinction between the spirit and the body
    2 - Each is made distinctly; body procreated, spirit from God
    3 - Body is sin-wrecked from conception, spirit is sinless from God
    4 - Spirit becomes sinful when we "go our own way"
    5 - Spirit is cleansed (sinless) at regeneration (post-cross only)
    6 - Body will be cleansed in the resurrection

    So the inner man of a believer is sinless, has been forever perfected, etc. But we still have sin in our flesh. Our mind (soul) is constantly dealing with impulses from both a sinless spirit and a sinful body.

    When our behavior fails, it is sin. But our inner man has been sealed by the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption, when our body will be made new. Then the while man will be complete.

    There's much more. I just led our church through this during Wednesday night bible study, and it took over a year
     
  17. JamesL

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    One thing we have to stop is the use of anti-scriptural notions as "positional" righteousness.

    We have already been washed by the blood of Christ, who came with a better ministry that that of bulls and goats

    We have become the righteousness of God
     
  18. plain_n_simple

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    So true, great post!
     
  19. Van

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    Hi JonC, take a gander at 1 John 1:7-8. Note the blood of Christ "cleanses us from all sin. Not has cleansed us, past but in the present. And if we say we have no sin, [referring to born anew saints] we are deceiving ourselves. Thus from our point of view, when we look at our life, we see our shortcomings, places where we need to grow and mature. We do not see ourselves as perfect, but in need of growth to become more Christ-like.

    But, at the same time, the blood of Christ is, present tense, cleansing us, and so from the perspective of building up wrath, we do not sin! (1 John 3:6) So we are in fact sinners (from our perspective) saved by grace.

    If we say we do not sin, then we are denying our shortcomings, and will not grow. Bottom line, both statements are true, we sin but our sins are not counted as sins because of the blood of Christ. Thus in Christ we are holy and blameless and perfect, but we should not sin all the more so grace can abound, we are to strive to be Christ-like every day.
     
    #19 Van, Jun 29, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 29, 2015
  20. tyndale1946

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    Romans 7:9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.

    7:10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.

    7:11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.

    7:12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.

    7:13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.

    7:14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.

    7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

    7:16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.

    7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

    7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.

    7:19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.

    7:20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

    7:21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.

    7:22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:

    7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

    7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

    7:25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

    Paul not only named he was a sinner but also claimed it... Are we also afraid to claim we are also?... We maybe be as William Huntington an old English preacher signed all his correspondence S.S... Sinner Saved but according to our old nature we still sin daily even though we are grace wrought, blood bought children of the most high God... Any Brother or Sister who thinks they are more than that needs to read and examine Romans 7 in greater detail!... Brother Glen
     

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