Summary: Every believer in Christ has a right standing with God, and can therefore walk in spiritual confidence! We can move from living by rule-keeping to living by grace.
How Most of Us Live
- Based on rules
- For the approval of others
- For our own version of success
Our State vs. Our Standing
John Phillips talks about the difference between our standing as believers, and our state as believers. Our standing is that we are perfect and righteous, and that we are released from any condemnation. But our state is that we are imperfect, struggling to break free of sin, and experiencing not the wrath of God, but His chastisement.
Our standing is as forgiven, purified, and at peace with God.
Our state is "in progress."
How to Walk In Spiritual Confidence
1. TRUST in a past event - the cross.
One of the greatest ways we can grow our faith is to act in faith. If we’ve turned in trust to Jesus as Savior, then we need to walk in the reality that we have been justified of our sins. We will never feel fully saved as long as our feet get dirty in this world. Satan will remind us of our past and our consciences will disturb us and plant question marks in our minds. But if we’ve asked Jesus to save and forgive us, then let us walk in the victory of that forgiveness.
2. ACCEPT our present possessions.
- We have PEACE with God.
Verse 10 points out a truth that is probably very difficult for most people to understand, and that is that not only are we lost before coming to know Christ, we are actually God’s enemies, and the enmity goes both ways. We are determined to rebel and He is determined to punish eternally those who rebel. If that causes you to doubt the love of God, just read verses 6 – 8 in which God’s love is exalted.
Through the death of Jesus, we have peace with God. We are relieved of our debt, we are forgiven of our trespasses, we are made to be friends with God!
- We have ACCESS to God's Grace.
So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. ~ Hebrews 4:16 NLT
It is by the grace of God that we can be introduced into the presence of the Father, and Paul says that grace is not only that which saved us in a one-time event, but grace is that in which we stand confident today.
- We have an outpouring of God's LOVE.
- We have the gift of God's HOLY SPIRIT.
We can walk in confidence because of the gift of the Holy Spirit for His presence reminds us of God’s faithfulness and His voice whispers confirmation in our ears if we’re listening…
For all who are led by the Spirit of God are childrent of God. So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. ~ Romans 8:14-16 NLT
3. ANTICIPATE an awesome, eternal future.
We are guaranteed the hope of glory. We are guaranteed that our PRESENT SUFFERING COUNTS!