WALK IN FAITH – REST IN GRACE
BY: ROMEO CORSINI
God is not hard to please. He just wants that we see things his way. He sees everything accomplished and it is good in his sight. This is the walk of faith: living according to the grace of God and not according to the law of God. His grace requires you to be humble – the law requires you to be condemned. It’s much like the calculator and the computer. First there was the calculator, the law. Then there was the computer, the grace. With the calculator, you punch in the numbers and, right or wrong, good or bad you’re stuck with the end result; that’s what will print. But with a computer you can do the same thing, but you can correct what needs changing and then press the print button to end up with the result you wanted. The computer didn’t do away with the calculator in order to achieve the end result. It incorporated the calculator. That’s much like the grace of God: it did not do away with the law; but what it did was allow for everything to end up fixed and perfect before it pushed the print button to end up with the result. The calculator condemns you to your mistakes while the computer has lots of room to grow and change and become perfect. That’s the grace of God; giving us the opportunity to develop, get to know him more and become more and more like him. Grace requires you to be confident in what and who you are; law insists that you keep trying to become perfect.
Now, there has to be an end to it sometime. It ends with Jesus Christ; and if it doesn’t end with Jesus, then where does it end? With you? Are you perfect? Can you stand in the place of someone else and cover their imperfections so they don’t show? With what would you cover them? With your perfection? You don’t have a perfection. Jesus has a perfection and it is the grace of God that equates his perfection with your unworthiness. He by his grace shares his own perfection to make you equal to his son. If it were the law that would bring us to perfection, then we all would have to achieve the sinless life of Christ, tempted, yet sinless, individually, from the beginning. The spirit teaches us that that is impossible. Because, as long as we have emotions, we will sin with them, unless we learn what God is teaching us: He took care of walking in perfection: we must take care of walking in faith.
“And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins: Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:1-9.
“Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:11-13.
Verse eleven is walking in faith. What walking in faith declares is that I am in control of how I will react and behave in my circumstance. (Verse 12).
God has brought my emotions to my attention. He tells me that I don’t have to throw away my emotions; my lust, my envy, my jealousy, my greed, etc. After all, He gave them to me. But He tells me that I must manage them. Feelings are normal. But I must take control. They must not control me. Control don’t vent.
Ephesians 4:26, “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath.” Be in control. What is delicate about emotions is that they can easily make us feel condemned. That is contrary to the word of God. Now God tells us that we should stay convicted instead of condemned. Emotions are there to drag us around if we allow them; to make us come out and force us to behave the way they are. Emote means to come out, to act out. But I’m learning that that walk of faith is constant and consistent; peaceable and teachable. You can tell the legalists from the ‘gracers’. The legalist is a judge condemning and criticizing. The ‘gracer’ always gives way to faith, believing that ‘this too shall pass’. It’ll be alright. He’s usually the one that legalists can’t stand, or poke fun at or are bored by. You see, the legalist lives by flesh. The man of grace lives by the spirit. Our job is to take contro
Matthew 26:41, “Watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” There is no condemnation there. There is only truth. Nothing to get legalistic about. Just take control. In some cases, you’ll find you don’t want to. But the more you give way to the Spirit, the stronger your faith will grow, to where you won’t be bothered by your nor by other’s weaknesses, but you’ll be rejoicing over the strengths.
Psalm 92:12 The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. God wants us to be stable like trees. The righteous are not those who do not sin; they are those who walk in faith, in grace, in control, in Spirit. The trees are marred and bruised by their environment; they show the signs of wear and tear; yet they stay planted and rooted and trust that that is what will keep them growing, not the fact that they are forever trying to dodge all the temptations of the weather. We must learn to look beyond what we’ve been saved from and learn to look at what we’ve been saved unto. We’ve been saved from anger, fights, thefts, hate, sorrow, etc. But let’s not look at those, not in ourselves nor in others. We’ve been saved unto mercy, forgiveness, patience, understanding, kindness, love: all the fruit of the Spirit.
Romans 2:28-29 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is the circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.
We can say it this way: He is not a Jew by works which is in the flesh. But by Spirit, developing one self to be more like Jesus in order to succeed in the flesh. Sometimes, we have the cart before the horse. We try living for the Lord by trying not to do bad. Well, that’s fine if we’re strong enough in the Spirit first. Take a nurse or a doctor. If a doctor started doctoring just based solely on the fact that that’s what he wanted to do with all his heart, 99% of all his patients would suffer some drastic results. He has to train first, go to school, learn, get it down real deep, where he knows it through and through before he takes on the challenge. He has to be confident first, knowing that no matter what, healing is going to be the result one way or the other. We are no different. We ought to remain in Jerusalem first until we are endued with power from on high.
Romans 3:20 “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” The law merely says that I can’t do it. That’s saying that my trying hard not to shout, not to become angry, to hold it all in and say nothing should tell me that I can’t do it. It won’t last. That’s not where my righteousness is. He justifies those that are still guilty.
“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? (Romans 6:1) The grace of God does cover us even now while we are guilty; (but that does not mean, God forbid, that we should continue to sin. We must be faithful to the righteousness of the Christ.)
“What shall we say then, that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying, blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.” Romans 4:1-8
“That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” Romans 8:4 Righteousness has nothing to do with never failing in the flesh, but with walking in the spirit, in faith, in charge, knowing who I am in him, perhaps better said, in a constant attitude of repentance.
“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” Romans 8:9.
John 3:30 He must increase but I must decrease. The order of this verse is important. As I let the spirit flow from me, as I more and more walk in the spirit, I’ll find myself more and more conforming to his image and it won’t have been the fact that I didn’t steal, that I didn’t lie, shout, kill. It will have been that the spirit fashioned me according to His image. You don’t get rid of the flesh to get the spirit. You exercise the spirit and he gets rid of the flesh. Luke 18:10-14 “Thank you God that I am not like this other guy. I don’t do this and I don’t do that.” The Lord said that the sinner who acknowledged his faults and fell at the mercy of God, without judging his neighbor, by the way, went away justified.
Our eyes must shift from looking at life and the world through the window of the law and, without being afraid, we must begin looking through the window of the grace of God, leaving it to him to judge. His whole point is telling us that we have enough to do with ourselves. When we get fixed, we’ll discover so many other things get fixed right along with us.
“The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? Saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live? But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die. Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal? When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die. Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that hath he committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die.” –Ezekiel 18:20-28
Can there be a continual walk of faith without a continual attitude of repentance? Clearly, the objective of the heart of God is to form the heart of man like unto his own. His mercy demonstrates this. Show me a man aware of his humble state before God and I will show you a man after God’s own heart. “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord God. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.” –Ezekiel 18:30-32 God is not in the funeral business; he is in the nursery business. God does not bury; he plants. The purpose for planting is to produce growth. Along with planting is fertilizing. Would God expect growth from us if he did not also provide food for growth?
Let his revelation of his word unto us as we walk in faith rejoicing for his grace strengthen us against our flesh and raise us into spiritual giants for his glory! Let his faith show us to know that he is better interested that we succeed in our journey to becoming like him than in failing his resolve. He will finish that work that he began in his creation and all men shall declare that he is God.
WALK IN FAITH – REST IN GRACE [Romeo Corsini] 1