JUSTIFICATION (Finished at Christ's "Finish Line")
1. We are irreversiblty saved by Grace Alone, through Faith Alone, in Christ Alone in a moment of time, apart from any Works at anytime.
2. No Works can rise up subsequent to Salvation to retro-judge or justify the Faith by which we were saved. It has been decided "once for all" Who You Are in Christ.
SANCTIFICATION (Finished at "Your Finish Line")
1. Godly Works only become possible when we are saved, whereby as a child of God we should seek to grow and mature in Godly Works, fellowship and discipleship. The New Testament letters written to believers implore, teach and guide "Now, Walk Like Who You Are."
2. Faith that has already saved will always bear Fruit (Works), but it may not be apparent to man (James 2:18)--the "stubble"-works may overshadow and obscure the "gold"-Works. We would not know Lot's Faith bore any "gold"-fruit if 2 Peter 2:8 hadn't told us.
1. We will enter (Mat. 5:20; John 3:5) the Eternal Life inherited (Heb. 1:14) at the moment (John 5:24) of our justification--for it was "finished".
2. We will receive our inheritance within the Heavenly Kingdom--either the "least", the "greatest" (Mat. 5:19), or somewhere in-between (1 Cor. 3:12-15) based on the heavenly Rewards earned in our walk of sanctification--for our life-walk is finished as our heavenly life begins.
WHAT SHOULD WE DO ABOUT THE GOSPEL?
1. We must proclaim the Finished Gospel that "through faith you are saved...it is the gift of
God, not of works, lest any man should boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9)
2. If it were true that in order to be saved, alongside your faith you must work the works of Lordship, then Lot, Samuel, and Solomon would not have been saved. Their lives, dominated more by "wood, straw and stubble" that by "gold, silver and precious stones", would have proven they were not saved. Not enough good works.
3. But the Bible says that they were saved--by faith, for by Free Grace alone, "where sin increased, grace abounded all the more" (Romans 5:20). From the moment of salvation they HAVE had assurance (1 John 5:13). Amazingly, 1 Corinthians 3:12-15 shows how they will remain securely and assuredly saved apart from their works-record.
4. Yet Ephesians 2:10 shows it is God's desire that, once we are saved (v. 8-9), from day-1 we "walk" in good works in the Name of Jesus to His Glory. God's unbounded Grace given freely to us in our salvation will by the Holy Spirit empower us, and should motivate us, to walk as our Savior walked!
As for Lot, Samson, Solomon--and yes, me--we are singing God's praises now and forevermore, because through Christ Jesus, "where sin increased, grace abounded all the more" (Romans 5:20)--Grace only made possible by what Jesus did on the cross that enabled Him to declare...
"It is finished" (John 19:30)