• Jack Selcher

Grace Fruit

Imagine a husband who expects his wife to keep the house spotlessly clean. His demands are merciless. There’s no help. No allowance for sickness or failure. No praise or approval. The marriage is until death do them part.

Similarly, God’s law reveals His perfect standards. It provides no means to meet them. Like a mirror, God’s law shows us our dirty face. It can’t clean it. Because we can’t measure up to its demanding standards, we’re under its condemnation. It requires absolute obedience. Only Jesus meets the standard.

According to Jewish law in Paul’s day, a wife couldn’t divorce her husband for any reason. Divorce was the husband’s sole right. Only his death freed her to marry someone else. In Paul’s illustration, believers are the wife. The law is the husband.

Paul twists the application. From his illustration, we’d expect the law, the authority, must die. Instead, in verse 4, Paul tells us we died by being united to Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection (Romans 6:3–4). The dead are freed from sin (Romans 6:7) and the Law of Moses (Romans 7:3). Romans 6:14 (NIV) connects them: “For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.”

Death to sin and the law prepares us to bring forth fruit for God. Many Christians define their spiritual lives by what they don’t do. Not smoking, drinking, etc. aren’t bad decisions. But the law still has authority over them. They’re not free to serve and love Jesus who died to set them free. Through death to sin and the law, we’re free to be fruitful for God.

What kind of fruit does He expect? Fruit in the New Testament includes at least six areas of the Christian life. It describes those whom we lead to faith in Christ (1 Corinthians 16:15). It involves the Holy Spirit’s producing Christlike character in us (Galatians 5:22-23). It includes both understanding the things of God (1 Corinthians 14:14) and every good work (Colossians 1:10). It encompasses financial investment in God’s work (Philippians 4:17). It embraces praise to God (Hebrews 13:15).

“We have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code” (Romans 7:6, NIV). The new way of the Spirit consists of a new life, a new motivation, and a new power. Experiencing them results in sharing our faith, behaving, knowing, working, giving, and praising progressively more like Jesus.

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I invite you to check out my book, His Power for Your Weakness, a devotional discipleship resource and to share it with others: https://read.amazon.com/kp/embed?asin=B09NZG9W7L&preview=newtab&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_FSRD4SGCXC35KMZ6ED5R

See free spiritual growth resources for Christians at https://www.christiangrowthresources.com

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