The Saving and Sanctifying Work of God
“Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, ‘Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.’ …But some of the sect of the Pharisees who had believed stood up, saying, ‘It is necessary to circumcise them and to direct them to observe the Law of Moses.’” (Acts 15:1, 5;)
When God chose to save both Jews and Gentiles apart from the Law of Moses, there was a religious earthquake which shook the foundations of the soul, and the tremors remain to this day.
Judaism found the cleansing of the flesh for worship and service through obedience to Law. Though the inside was always made clean only by faith, the outside was made clean by works. When Jesus Christ came as the ultimate and final sacrifice, His blood accomplished not only the cleansing of the inside, but also the cleansing of the outside. This is one reason why the death of Jesus was different in totality from other blood sacrifices.
But many of the Jews had a hard time believing that one could receive total cleansing by grace through faith. Stubbornly, they clung to good works as a sanctifying factor.
As I said, the tremors of this earthquake remain today. So many have difficulty believing that grace can both save and sanctify. Peter said to his companions, “But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are.”(Acts 15:11;).
The amazing thing about grace is it has a total cleansing power! From the inside out, it is all you need. To insist upon works for salvation or sanctification is to offend the blood of Jesus.
So what about works? Good works are the fruit of the grace of God, not the factor for the grace of God. When you realize the power of God’s grace in your life, you respond in heart-felt works!
In His Grace,
Dr. Randy White
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