Many of you are probably unaware that we are slaves to sin before we are saved. So enslaved to your own sinful, fleshly desires that you cannot do a single thing that pleases God (Romans 8:8). You would not even have trusted in Christ as your Lord and Savior unless God had given you faith as a gift (Eph. 2:8-10) and had chosen you for salvation "through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ." (2 Thess. 2:13-14). Your faith and repentance are gifts of God- in other words, you would be an unbeliever unless God gave you the desire to believe. Let that sink in- it will move you to tears over your own sinfulness and His graciousness and cause you to love God so much more and love others so much more.
So my question today is, if it is God who gives us faith and repentance and frees us from our inability to do good and please God, what is our new status once we are saved? In other words, if we are saved from sin, what does being freed from sin look like? What is a saved person's heart and desires and passions like? In short, how now does the Christian desire to live?
Firstly, the gospel itself, and the grace of God has taught us as Christians to:
"teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. 15 Speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no one despise you.
That is from Titus 2:12-15. Notice, God's purpose in saving us is to redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. This is what life is all about for the Christian. The saved person IS zealous for good works and to put off sin, studying the Bible, studying theology, learning more about God, glorifying Him in all we do, as we share the gospel with others and eagerly await for the return of our Savior, our Bridegroom, Jesus Christ.
And if that is not your heart desire, you are not a Christian. I am not suggesting that, I am telling you that. That is simply what the Bible teaches, and to disagree is to disagree with God Himself, for He says this very thing in the Bible.
"They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work." Titus 1:16
If being a Christian is a part time hobby, or even a full time job to you, you are not a Christian. A Christian is a Christian in all of His life. Being saved doesn't speak to your religious affiliations or views, it speaks to the very essence and purpose of your entire life, in all that you do. Christ is life, life is Christ, and if this isn't true for you then you are not a Christian and are still under the wrath of God.
So, if we are saved from sin, what are we saved unto? Slavery to God. God is your Lord, your Master, He tells you what to do in everything, and you desire to obey and do it, or else you are not a Christian. If you have not submitted to the righteousness of Christ, if you have not turned to God and asked Him to save you and make you His slave, you have not repented, and you are still in your sins.
Romans 6: 15 "What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not! 16 Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? 17 But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19 I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves ofrighteousness for holiness. 20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21 What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. 22 But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."