Lesson Eleven

Liberty in Christ

"Since All My Sins Are Forgiven, Am I Free to Do as I Please?"

The New Testament is very clear that as saved people, we are no longer bound by any law to please God, but we are under His grace. However, many people take this freedom as an opportunity to sin, thinking they are free to do as they wish.

The purpose of this lesson is to help the individual understand just what his liberties in Jesus Christ are, and what lines need to be drawn in his live in relation to his actions as a child of God.

Am I free to Do what I Want?

A.     Personally, regarding your own life, you are free to make your own choices (John 8:36; Romans 14:22; Titus 1:15).
B.     You are eternally secure in Jesus Christ. If you have genuinely placed your trust in him as your Savior, you cannot go to Hell. You will go to Heaven regardless of what you do and whether you like it or not (Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8-9).
C.     You are not bound by any laws (Romans 8:2; Galatians 3:24-25).

However -- Guidelines for Liberty

A.     The liberty you have in Jesus Christ gives you freedom to do what is right, without the constraints of any laws, as opposed to giving you license to sin or do whatever you want (Galatians 5:13).
B.     Your liberty should not be used to feed your sinful flesh (Romans 6:12-18).
C.     Your liberty enables you to serve God (1 Peter 2:16).

How does My Freedom Affect Me Personally?

A.     You are free to make your own choices, but if you choose to sin, you should be aware of the consequence.
  1.   You will not bear fruit (John 15:1-8).
  2.   God will chasten you as His son (Hebrews 12:5-11).
  3.   God will allow you to reap what you have sown (Galatians 6:7-8).
B.     God will receive the glory from your life one way or another, either as a vessel of honor or a vessel of dishonor. The choice is yours (2 Timothy 2:20-21).

How Does My Freedom Affect Those Around Me?

A.     Your life will be a testimony for good or for bad, whether you want it to be or not (Romans 14:7).
B.     You are to avoid things which could cause a weaker Christian to stumble in his faith (Romans 14:13-15; 1 Corinthians 8:9-13).
C.     You are to avoid things which appear wrong even though they may not be wrong (Romans 14:16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22).
D.     You are to have a good testimony toward both saved and lost people (Romans 14:18). The purpose of this is to influence them for good in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 11:22-24; 1 Corinthians 9:19-23).
  1.   To the saved (Acts 6:1-3; 16:1-2)
  2.   To the lost (Colossians 4:5; 1 Timothy 3:7)

What Are the bounds of My Liberty?

There are many "gray areas" in dealing with certain things you may or may not want to be involved with. In these cases, ask yourself some questions:

A.     Am I being brought under the poser of something that should not be controlling my life (1 Corinthians 6:12)?
B.     Am I edifying myself or others (1 Corinthians 10:23)?
C.     Can I ask God to bless it with a Clear Conscience (Colossians 3:17: Acts 24:16)?
D.     If the Lord returned at this moment, would I be ashamed (1 Corinthians 1:8; 1 Thessalonians 5:23)?
E.     Would it cause a brother to stumble (Romans 14:13-15; 15:1-2)?
F.     Would it be cause for an unsaved person to reject the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior (1 Corinthians 10:31-33)?
G.     Does my conscience condemn me for it (1 Peter 3:16; Hebrews 13:18; 1 Timothy 1:5)?

Key Memory Verses

    "For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another" (Galatians 5:13).
       
    "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves" (Romans 15:1).
       
    "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Additional Thoughts

In many churches today, some popular teachings are:

1.     There is a "set of rules" a Christian must live by in order to please god.
2.     You are free to do whatever you want regardless of how it affects other people
3.     What you do has no real influence on other people.

From the Bible principles taught in this lesson, you should understand that these teaching are false, and why.

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