Abide

May 20, 2013

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“The idea so many Christians have of grace is this: that their conversion and pardon are God’s work, but now, in gratitude to God, it is their work to live as Christians and follow Jesus. There is always a thought of a work that has to be done, and even though they pray for help, the work is theirs. No wandering one; as it was Jesus who drew you when He said, “Come” so it is Jesus who keeps you when He says, “Abide.” The grace to come and the grace to abide are both from Him alone.”
Andrew Murray

Are we abiding in grace or merely saved by it?

A main difference in Christians today is not the means of salvation. Being saved by grace is a dividing line between Christianity and cult.

How we live as believers brings a wide range of ideas. The goal of a holy life, led pleasing to God is the same.

But the path we take to get there can be radically different, especially in the area of our motives.

Do we live to earn God’s favor or out of a response to it?
Is obedience inspired by love or duty?
Are we slaves or sons and daughters?

Jesus said, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.  I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:4-5)

Jesus himself said we cannot grow as a believer apart from abiding in Christ, in his gift of grace.

“No longer do I call you servants for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.” (John 15:15-16)

We are no longer servants but friends (or sons and daughters)

As Andrew Murray said so well, grace is so much more than salvation. Grace is for all of life. Grace helps us live.

Human nature tells us it is all up to us.

God says success comes when we stop trying so hard and allow God, and grace, to work in us.

Obedience is important. But perhaps we need to be reminded of one of the commands we should first and foremost seek to obey.

Abide.

No wandering one; as it was Jesus who drew you when He said, “Come” so it is Jesus who keeps you when He says, “Abide.” The grace to come and the grace to abide are both from Him alone.”
Andrew Murray

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Chris

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A missionary teacher for 24 years currently living in South Africa. I am a recovering superhero, daily in need of the grace of God