1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?
4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
Some Christians have a hard time with the doctrine of grace because they think it’s a license to sin. It just seems too easy to believe in Jesus and then do as you please. Shouldn’t believers still be required to live a certain way in order to please the Lord? The problem with this reasoning is that it mixes legalism with grace by saying, “Sure, we are saved by grace, but after salvation, you’d better follow the rules to stay in God’s favor.” Such thinking cuts the heart out of grace and poisons the message of hope.
What we need to realize is that grace is a greater motivator than law. When you have to perform in order to please the Lord, guilt is your constant companion because you can never be good enough. Every time you fail to live up to your own expectations, you may question whether He loves you—or maybe even whether you’re really saved. God doesn’t want us to live in bondage to performance. We’ve already received His acceptance, and there is nothing more we can add to it.
Grace not only sets us free from guilt but also motivates us to obey and serve the Lord out of love and gratitude for everything He has done for us. Instead of feeling burned out in our service, we will have a burning passion for Him.
Are you working harder and harder to please God? If so, you’re probably worn out. When you truly learn to understand and live in His grace, you’ll be energized because obedience and service will be a natural result of His overflowing love. Instead of guilt, you’ll have joy and gratitude.