Here is an excerpt from my little .99 e-book Sacred Stories and Strong Families.
One of the things that makes raising sons and daughters in our age so dangerous and so difficult is that we live in a time of apostasy in our nation. The drift from God is so dangerous it is like a rip-tide of evil that pulls the young and the weak to their death. As always there is a theology behind this. It is a theology that redefines grace. You can read this theology in the popular evangelical writing of our time. You can hear it from the popular pulpit. It is the theme of our song, literally. Much of the Christian products packaged and sold to our children lack an accurate definition of grace. The grace we often hear about from the popular pulpit, the evangelical press, and in the watery lyrics of popular evangelical music is little more than a license to sin and it masquerades as “freedom in Christ.”
This should not surprise us. We were warned that we would have to contend earnestly for the faith because people would come into the church to subtly re-define grace as a license for sensuality. Here is how Jude put it: I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once delivered to the saints. For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality… (Jude 4 ESV)
Paul and Peter also warned of the same thing. Paul devoted the whole sixth chapter of Romans to it: “Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? God forbid.” (Romans 6:1ff; 21-23; 7:4-5) He warned the Galatians about it too. “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) Peter was careful to warn that we do not have freedom in Christ to sin. “Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.” (I Peter 2:16)
These men who walked with God warned that freedom is Christ is not freedom TO sin. Freedom in Christ is freedom FROM sin. Our children need to have a clear understanding of grace. If they listen to the weak theology of the popular church they will slowly poison themselves with error. They will come to believe that holiness is legalism. They need to understand grace so they will not consider holiness legalism or legalism holiness. (Romans 1:28-32; James 4:4)
Legalism and Licence in Romans 6-8
To abuse grace with sensual indulgence is sin. That is the danger Paul is discussing in Romans 6. To abuse the law by teaching that holiness is achieved through human effort and carnal struggle is another form of error. That is the danger Paul is treating in Romans 7. Our children need to have a right understanding of grace and experience freedom from the condemnation of sin, freedom from the domination of sin and the freedom of walking in the power of the Holy Spirit. That is what Paul is talking about in Romans 8.
Grace, rightly understood should be our theme and our anthem. Our children should drink deep at the fountain of grace. They should be taught to embrace but not to abuse grace. How can we make this vital truth clear to them?
(get the book to read the rest. It is free for Amazon Prime subscribers and only .99 for everyone else…