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Scripture Reading:  Romans 3:21-26


The Relation of Grace to Sin, Truth & Forgiveness



1.  Grace is a used & often abused Bible word (1 Pet. 5:12).

2.  Grace:  Undeserved favor, kindness (“that which affords joy, pleasure, delight”).

  a.  Revealed by the gospel of Christ; word of God (Acts 20:24, 32).

  b.  Teaches us how to live (Titus 2:11-12).

  c.  Saved by it (Eph. 2:5, 8).

  d.  Stand in grace (Rom. 5:2).

  e.  Can fall from grace (Gal. 5:4).

  f.  Can be received in vain (2 Cor. 6:1; 1 Cor. 15:10).

  g.  Grace is conditional – Eph. 2:8; cf. Psa. 84:11.

3.  Relevance:  Error is defended & sinners are comforted by false views of grace:  Faith only; grace only; impossibility of apostasy, mdr…


I.  RELATION OF GRACE & SIN (it overcomes sin) Rom. 5:20-21; 3:20-26.

  A.  Grace Accomplishes What Law Cannot – Acts 15:11 (13:38-39).

    1.  Law cannot save – it condemns men as sinners – Gal. 3:10 (Rom. 3:20; 4:15).

    2.  Justification by faith (not by law) is due to God’s grace – Rom. 3:21-24; Gal. 3:11-14.

  B.  God’s Grace is Superior to Man’s Sin Rom. 5:20-21.

    1.  5:20 – Law exposed man’s sin & God’s wrath against it (3:19-20; 4:15) – but – Grace is greater than sin.

    2.  5:21Sin’s domain is deathbutgrace’s domain is righteousness unto eternal life through Jesus Christ!

  C.  Gospel of Grace Teaches Us to Give Up Sin as Our Way of Life6:2.

      -(“Shall we continue to sin that grace may abound?”) – Rom. 6:1, 15.

    1.  Deny sin…live soberly, righteously & godly – Tit. 2:11-12.

    2.  Sin no longer to have dominion over Christian Rom. 6:14:

      a.  No longer live in it – 6:2.

      b.  No longer slaves to it – 6:6-7.

      c.  Dead to sin – 6:11.

      d.  Sin does not reign (rule) in body…do not obey its lusts – 6:12.

      e.  Do not yield your body to unrighteousness – 6:13.

    3.  Willful sin insults the Spirit of grace – Heb. 10:26, 29.


II.  RELATION OF GRACE & TRUTH (they are companions).

  A.  Jesus is the Fullness of Grace & Truth Jno. 1:14, 16-17.

    1.  Cannot be saved by grace & reject Christ’s truth Acts 20:24.

    2.  Cannot stand in truth with false concepts of grace.

  B.  Standing in Grace Means Walking in Truth Rom. 5:2; Gal. 1:6-7.

    1.  Gal. 5:4 – Fall from grace when we live in error.

    2.  Gal. 5:5-7 – Our hope is by faith…working thru love…obeying!

    3.  1 Jno. 1:5-7 – Practice truth…walk in light…cleansing from sin.



  A.  Receiving Grace is ConditionalTit. 2:11-12; 3:4-7; Gal. 5:5-7.

  B.  Grace Does not Save Christians in Spite of Their SinRom. 6:16, 23.

      -(This is “once saved, always saved” thinking, 6:1, 15).

  C.  Grace Does Not Provide Automatic Forgiveness of Sin (“continual cleansing” – even as we sin).

    1.  Christians continue to be cleansed when they continue to walk in the light – 1 Jno. 1:9 (We have to walk in the light to receive c.c.)

    2.  Classic argument: 

      a.  Man sees a woman, lusts after her & is hit by car:  Will God forgive him although he didn’t have chance to repent?

      b.  cf. Man on his way to be baptized, killed in accident:  Will God save him although he didn’t have a chance to be baptized?

      c.  Answer:

        1)  Hypothetical is constructed with a bias (how do you know he lusted?)!  Do you have the confidence to go stand in the street, lust after a woman, and let a car run you over?

        2)  Motive is to justify clear error without repenting of it!

        3)  Christian who is walking in the light avoids lust.

        4)  God will judge righteously – that we are certain.

*   3.  If standing in grace means automatic forgiveness (“continual cleansing”) for Christians, then…

        a.  How can Christians ever sin?  1 Jno. 1:8

        b.  Why are Christians told to do anything when they sin?  1 Jno. 1:9; Acts 8:22 (confess sin, repent & pray)

        c.  Why is fellowship with God conditional?  1 Jno. 1:7

        d.  How is it possible for Christians to fall from grace?  Gal. 5:4

        e.  How is it possible for Christian to “fall short” of grace of God?  Heb. 12:15

        f.  Why deny worldly lusts?  Tit. 2:11-12

        g.  Why obey God?  Jno. 14:15

        h.  Why are Christians urged to continue in the grace of God?  Acts 13:43



1.  Things grace does not do:

  a.  Save from unrepented sin – Acts 17:30

  b.  Make sin righteous – Rom. 6:1-2 (Jude 4)

  c.  Minimize or overwhelm truth – Jno. 1:17 (Acts 20:32)

  d.  Make doctrine secondary – Gal. 1:6-10

  e.  Eliminate the necessity of obedience – Matt. 7:21-23; Lk. 17:10

2.  Grace saves us & teaches us to live under rule of truth & righteousness, not sin – Eph. 2:8-9; Gal. 5:6-7.  Obey Jesus now & always (Jas. 4:6-10).