Our Godly Liberty And Our Likeness As “Sons”

Gal 5:13  For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.

Gal 5:14  For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Gal 5:15  But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.

Gal 5:16  This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Gal 5:17  For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

Gal 5:18  But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.

Oftentimes when we that are justified in Christ think about our liberty status we glory and marvel at the provision that God made for us on the cross by Jesus Christ, and the justification that is ours understanding that we now have “peace with God,” and we are no longer “enemies” in His sight, but justified saints who are now are at “liberty” to now be “dead to this world, but alive unto God.” But this is not all that we are to understand and appreciate about our sanctified lives as “sons,” and the mechanics by which we to successfully walk in “liberty” in a godly way, just as God designed. The Corinthian and the Galatian saints had a lot to learn about these truths, they understood and appreciated the basic truths about their sanctified lives, but they utilized their liberty for their own selfish fleshly gains, and instead of using their liberty the way God designed, they used their liberty “for an occasion to the flesh.” These saints lacked the overall objective about the liberty they have as “sons,” and “daughters;” which is the godly love that we are taught by our Father in His word that is needed to successfully walk in liberty just as God designed.

Rom 12:1  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

Rom 12:2  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Rom 12:3  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Rom 12:4  For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:

Rom 12:5  So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

Rom 12:9  Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.

Rom 12:10  Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;

Moreover, we are taught these truths in Romans chapter 12 which is the second part of the son’s foundational education; the first part is found in chapter 8 teaching the fundamental doctrines of godliness as “sons,” and the selfless love of God and how He is “for us” while we face troublous times in this present evil world. And this part of our education is the ‘first-things-first’ that we must fully understand and appreciate contained within the doctrines of chapter 8 that we are to be first established by before we can fully understand what chapter 12 is all about. Romans thru Galatians teaches the son about the foundational doctrines about not only the selfless love of God for the saint, but also how to exercise godly selfless love toward each other, as being members “one of another.” And as we see here in verse 9 Paul expounds upon verses 1-5 by showing the “how” we are to accomplish verses 1-3, and that is learning how to view this world, and the things of this world the way our Father views them. And when we learn to love “what” our Father loves, then we will learn to “abhor” the things that He dislikes as well.

1Co 6:9  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

1Co 6:10  Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

1Co 6:11  And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

1Co 6:12  All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

Furthermore, once we first learn ‘what’ our Father loves and cherish, then we too can judge, respond, and conduct ourselves in a godly manner knowing how to view the things of this world the way our Father views these things. And as we begin to love the things the Father loves, we will also begin to “abhor” the things of this world just as He does as well. You see, this is how we are able to present our bodies as an “a living sacrifice,” it is our understanding and appreciation for the selfless love of God toward us, and our valuing and esteeming the things our Father Values and esteems. This is an ‘identity’ that we have as “sons” of the Father, and the objective is being ‘like Father like son,’ this is true godliness! And it is the love of God that we are made aware of in the beginning chapters of Romans and especially in chapter 8, where we are shown that not only has our Father ‘foreknown,’ “called,”  ‘predestinated,’ “justified,” and “glorified” us, but in whatever thing in this life that we face (any and all tribulations and sufferings) He is also “for us!” this ought to be our motivating factor where we too should be able to say; “what shall we say then to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” And it is that Godly love that ought to spark an appreciation within the saint to want to give up of himself, and the worldly things that he once loved, for the Father’s sake, because we all know what He gave up on our behalf.

1Co 9:1 Am I not an apostle? am I not free? have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? are not ye my work in the Lord?

1Co 9:2  If I be not an apostle unto others, yet doubtless I am to you: for the seal of mine apostleship are ye in the Lord.

1Co 9:3  Mine answer to them that do examine me is this,

1Co 9:4  Have we not power to eat and to drink?

1Co 9:5  Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?

1Co 9:6  Or I only and Barnabas, have not we power to forbear working?

1Co 9:7  Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges? who planteth a vineyard, and eateth not of the fruit thereof? or who feedeth a flock, and eateth not of the milk of the flock?

Moreover, we see Paul say that he gave up of himself for the saints because of his love for them and the ministry, Paul says that he could have lived after this world; which would have only been to the benefit of himself, but he taught the saints here that by not abusing his liberty he has a “reward” based upon his service for the “gospel’s sake” instead of thinking about his own “sake.” Paul shows the love of God for the saints when he says that we will receive a “reward,” “prize,” and a “crown” concerning our not abusing our liberty, and the “reward,” “prize,” and a “crown,” should not be our motivation to want to fully utilize our ‘godly liberty’ properly; our motivation ought to be God’s love for us, and our wanting to be ‘like’ our Father who has given us all His mercy and grace, and allowed us to live unto Him and allow His word to work effectually within us. But this is not all, the other motivating factor for our wanting to fully utilize our godly liberty properly should be the church; the members of His body. And we being “sons” of the One who teaches us His selflessness, ought to value and appreciate His Love, and ones who desire to be ‘like’ Him, we should desire to live like He has taught us, and walk in his Identity as “sons and daughters.”

1Co 9:18  What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

1Co 9:19  For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.

1Co 9:20  And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

1Co 9:21  To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.

1Co 9:22  To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

1Co 9:23  And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

1Co 9:24  Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.

1Co 9:25  And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

Furthermore, it is our love for the body itself that should cause us to not want to give so much attention to just one member in the body; our self! We ourselves ought to know this is the case with our own body, when one of our body parts begins to cause us pain, that part of our body receives all of our attention, and we cannot wait until that ‘member’ does not need to receive so much of the ‘limelight’ and do its intended purpose; which is to work together as one, for one common goal in the body. And as you see Paul say in verse 23; that his motivation to fully utilize his liberty properly is for the “sake” of the gospel, and so that he “might be partaker thereof” with the members of the body; the church. This is what is taught also in Romans chapter 8:1-10 how that we ought to put off the things of this world, and our desires for them by a ‘renewing’ of our minds, and how that we are members of one another, and that we ought to show brotherly love concerning one another for one Godly edifying purpose.

Eph 4:15  But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

Eph 4:16  From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

Eph 4:17  This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,

Eph 4:18  Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

Eph 4:19  Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

Eph 4:20  But ye have not so learned Christ;

Eph 4:21  If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:

Eph 4:22  That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

Eph 4:23  And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;

Eph 4:24  And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.

Eph 4:25  Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

And as we see from the verses above, it is “every part” that needs to be on the same godly page so that the body can fully operate unto the “effectual” way God intended, but the only way we can fully play our “part” in this whole Godly operation is that we have to change our way of thinking about this world and our “walk” as the “old man,” and be “renewed” by the doctrine that we are “taught by Him,” and begin to “put on the new man.” And this we do in brotherly love towards others while we give up of ourselves for their sakes, and we also give up our ‘former conversations’ that we had in this world for the Father’s sake. Finally, the “effectual” designed way that you the son can fully and properly utilize your godly liberty as “sons and daughters” the way God intended; and that is: just as faithful as even the Apostle Paul himself, (Paul is our example, and the doctrine will work “for us” the same “effectual” way it did for Paul), is to do as the previous verses indicate; understand and appreciate not only the love of God towards us, but what God loves, and how He loves, and when we learn this we will “walk in the Spirit” (the word of God) by “renewing” our minds with His word, and this will cause us to put others and the Lord Himself before ourselves and our “former” conversations in this world as we catered to the wants and needs of the “old man.” And it is this selfless behavior that we are taught by the Lord and the Apostle Paul as ensamples unto us as we see how they fully utilized the word of God to work for them regardless what this world threw at them.

Rom 8:35  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Rom 8:36  As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

Rom 8:37  Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

Rom 8:38  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

Rom 8:39  Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Rod Jones

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