If Grace Never Ends, Why Not Sin More?
What if too much grace didn’t lead to more sin? What if holding peoples grace hostage actually led to more sin? In this message we explain the importance of not suppressing God’s grace.
Anyone who preaches the real gospel message will more certainly be accused of teaching ‘cheap grace’, ‘hyper-grace’, or ‘a license to sin’. In fact, some will call you a heretic.
That’s because the message of TOTAL, and COMPLETE forgiveness, through faith alone, is offensive to the religious ego.
I often argue that if you’re not being accused of things like hyper-grace messages, the odds are you’re either not teaching the gospel, or, at the very least, you’re mixing law and grace. You’re mixing the old with the new, and they simply don’t go together.
[MATTHEW 9:16] no one puts a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for the patch pulls away from the garment, and a worse tear results.
[Matthew 9:17] Nor do people put new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wineskins burst, and the wine pours out and the wineskins are ruined; but they put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved.”
The Apostle Paul had the most controversial message of his time. His message was packed with grace as he taught we were saved APART from works of the law. Paul was asked a very peculiar question in Romans 6:1.
[Romans 6:1] What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
Paul is defending his message of grace. I ask you this – would someone preaching a bunch of rules and laws really need to make such a statement like Paul did? Of course not. The only time you someone would need to say ‘I am not saying we should exploit our grace by sinning more’ is if they were teaching what Paul was. Total acceptance through faith alone. By grace. Apart from human performance.
Too much grace really freaks a lot of Christians out. And honestly, it’s a fair question to ask, if “If We Have So Much Grace, Why Not Sin More?”. I’m betting that’s what led Paul to write what he did on Romans 6:1.
The answer to that question is far simpler than a lot of Christians might expect, and we’re going to answer it in just a minute.
You see, it’s only lifeless religion that tells us that too much grace leads to more sin. In fact, grace leads us to the opposite. It leads us to repentance (Romans 2:4). It’s only lifeless religion that tells us that too much grace is ‘hyper/cheap grace’ or a ‘license to sin’.
Today, I want to show how Christians can biblically be dunked in so much grace…UNLIMITED forgiveness, never-ending security, and never need to worry (let alone teach) that there needs be boundaries on how much grace we can enjoy.
You see, I think people are missing the second part of the gospel.
It seems all they think is that God just died for our sins, and that’s it. Now, if that were the case, I’d agree with the legalistic message of holding back on this gospel of grace (Acts 20:24, Galatians 1:6, Philippians 1:7) message.
If all God did was pay for our sins on the cross, then we’d be a bunch of forgiven people, but really no different than our pre-salvation self. We’d just be a bunch of evil people, with evil hearts, who had our sins forgiven, but still can’t wait to break new world records for sinning.
But what if God had that covered too? What if God not only took your sins away, but what if He also changed you? If God made you new, better, and changed your heart, could you then trust unending grace?
Let’s examine what the bible tells us God did.
[Ezekiel 36:26] Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
Do you believe this is true? Did God take away your old evil heart, and give you a new one? If so, does your NEW heart and NEW spirit want to sin more, and live out your new identity in Christ?
[2 Corinthians 5:17] Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
Do you believe this is true? Did God make you a new creation? If so, does your NEW self want to sin more, or does it really want to live out your new identity in Christ?
[Romans 6:4] 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.
Do you believe this is true? Did God bury the old self? Are you a new self, walking in the newness of life? If so, can we trust the new self with overflowing rivers of grace?
The point is that if the Spirit of Jesus abides (which simply means ‘lives’) in you, can we trust him to lead us in our daily lives, and not worry about putting limits on God’s grace?
Even the best of Christians sin every day. If we can’t trust unlimited grace, then where do we draw the line? 1 sin a week? 10 sins? 20? You see, this causes all kinds of confusion in the Christian world. When it comes to Christians, nowhere in scripture do we see God’s grace running out. Instead, it abounds all the more. Nowhere do we see God placing any limits on His forgiveness.
Now, let’s close with a little talk about our behavior. To some, unlimited forgiveness means we don’t think God cares about our behavior. That’s nonsense. But not for the reasons some think. We’re God’s children, and here’s cares because it doesn’t want to see his children led astray. But, God is NOT angry with His kids when we are deceived and stupidly make bad choices. He already dealt with that.
Our behavior is important. We will never be fulfilled by any kind of sin. Sin will leave us miserable and empty, every time. We are new creations in Jesus, and we will ONLY be happy when we are walking in the Spirit.
I absolutely think we should shine the light of Jesus to the whole world. Let’s love each other. Let’s give where there’s a need. Let’s feed the hungry. Let’s help the poor. Let’s honor our parents. But robbing Christians of grace is not the way to get them to avoid sin. It won’t make them more loving or giving. If your goal is for Christians to live out their NEW identity, then you need to teach them about who they are. If you feel like you’re still a dirty rotten sinner, well, you’ll live out what you’ve been convinced to think you are. If you believe, even on your worst day, that you are a totally forgiven NEW CREATION, loved, child of God, made for good works, then that is how you will live most of your life.
We still live in broken bodies, and behavior verses would not need to exist if we could not be tempted and stumble at times. Yes, we are dead to sin, but sin is very much alive. But we are not the sum total of our sins. We are the sum total of Jesus….even when we stumble. Totally forgiven, and accepted by our father.
Here are our closing verses:
[2 Peter 1:5-8] Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, 6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, 7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Those things are all great and we should exude them in our daily lives. And if we just leave verses 5-8 alone we walk away with some good behavior verses. But what would you say to a person who wasn’t being godly, having self-control, or acting kind?
Well, the get answer in the next verse:
[2 Peter 1:9] For he who lacks these qualities is blind or short-sighted, having forgotten his purification from his former sins.
So, if you want someone to lack all things on this list of amazing qualities, all you have to do is take their eyes off of Jesus and the cross. Get them to forget about the forgiveness of their sins.
The message of grace is 100% focused on the unlimited forgiveness of sins we enjoy, thanks to the finished work on the cross.
So, if your heart really is to lead people to avoid sin, and exude the love of Jesus, then don’t hold their forgiveness hostage. Let them know their sins really have been taken away. Let them know the cross was all the payment that will ever be needed for sin. Remind them that Jesus lives in them, and God has fully made them acceptable in His eyes, and they are presented as blameless.
Trust Jesus to be their guide and counselor.
Author: Mike Cynar
Mike Cynar was raised in a church setting where he frequently noticed that many attendees would eventually drift away. The church labeled these individuals as ‘back sliders’ or ‘fake Christians’ just looking for ‘fire insurance’. However, Mike realized the issue was rarely with these individuals but instead with the church’s message itself. The teachings heavily emphasized behavior improvement and one’s flaws, with only a fleeting mention of one’s identity in Christ. It felt as though every sermon was tailored to the church of Corinth, who as we know or committing sins that even unbelievers don’t partake in. This trend was noticeable not just in one denomination, but across Baptist, Catholic, Pentecostal, and many other churches. Upon understanding the true essence of the gospel – that our righteousness comes from Jesus’ actions, not our own – Mike was inspired to liberate believers from lifeless sermons and reconnect them with the genuine teachings of Jesus. He believes that one can nurture a vibrant and growing bond with Jesus, unhindered by rigid religious practices. And thus, “Jesus Without Religion” was born.
It turns out that it is grace that leads to repentance. And if our heart is to get others to walk in the Spirit and live a godly life, then the best approach is not a beat down sermon, but rather to remind other that it is only when we understand our true identity in Christ that we will live it out. Yes, it’s true, if you’re convinced that God thinks you’re a dirty sinner, you will ultimately continue a lifestyle that mirrors that view, but if you truly believe that even on your worst day, you are called holy, sanctified, justified, and will be presented blameless in the end, well, it turns out this is the secret to living out on the outside what has been worked in to the inside.