Matthew had a great post over on his blog, which set me to thinking about grace. Many Christians embrace the grace of God, which is freely given, but are content to feed on (rely upon) that grace to see them through even while they live their lives mostly in the flesh. They can do that, but as Dan Stone pointed out in his book, "The Rest of the Gospel," why would they want to? Here is an excerpt:
It is impossible for a person to know their union with Christ, and live out of that union, if they don't know that they have died with Christ. If I think that the old me is still alive, I am still my point of reference. If I am still my point of reference, I am still trying to correct me, straighten me up, make something out of me, or do something to change me. As long as my emphasis is upon me, it can't be upon Christ in me. So I am a divided (double minded) person.
You know what the Bible says about double minded men...
When Paul asks the question, "Shall we continue to sin just to prove the grace of God?" He concludes, "People who go on living like that don't really know they have died in Christ." In other words, their point of reference hasn't been changed. Their point of reference is still themselves, and they think they are no good and want to sin. Consequently, they are excited about all of this grace of God that they can keep drawing on. Paul would say, "Yes, you can keep drawing on the grace of God for everything you ever do, for every sin you ever commit. But WHY? Why not instead draw on the LIFE of God?"