Is the life of holiness ‘hard work’ ?

I have found freedom from sin because God revealed to me that nothing I do wrong can affect the way He sees me. In fact, He sees me as perfectly righteous, pure and holy because he sees me as he sees Christ. This is what Paul calls the ‘gift of righteousness.’ (Romans 5:17)

When Jesus died, he took my sin, and gave me His righteousness.

I have been a Christian for 15 years, but only now has he revealed to me the wonder of His grace – that no matter what I do wrong, however I slip up, whatever mistakes I make, to Him I am perfect.

“By one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who have been made holy.” (Hebrews 10:14)

When men teach we must strive and ‘work hard’ to be holy and righteous they put us back under the law – as if anything we do can add to the righteousness He has given to us – or anything we do can take it away.

Nothing we do can make us unholy, and nothing we do can make us holy. It is all about what Christ has done.

“Not of yourselves,” says Paul. “It is the gift of God.”

We are completely free. Jesus paid the price for all our mistakes past present and future. In fact, even in the midst of our sin God still sees us as perfectly righteous. If He didn’t, our status as ‘the righteousness of God’ would depend on what we do, not on what Christ has done for us. But Paul says:

“Not of yourselves. It is the gift of God.”

Our right status in God is a gift.

To imagine we can add anything to it by being good is a kind of self-righteousness. As if we have some part to play in our salvation, in our purity. But sorry, all you proud people out there, we don’t.

Jesus has done everything for us – saved us, sanctified us, purified us – once for all.

Rejoice! He has draped us in a robe of His righteousness, and nothing you can do can take that away, no words of men can disrobe you.

Nobody can rob us of our robes!

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