Every believer has a wonderful standing in grace: “By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God” (Romans 5:2). A believer’s standing has to do with his POSITION or status as a child of God, how God sees him in Christ. It has to do with all that is true of the believer because he is saved by grace. It is important to make a distinction between a believer’s POSITION (STANDING) and a believer’s PRACTICE (STATE). What is the believer’s PRACTICE? When we speak of a believer’s PRACTICE we are referring to the actual spiritual condition or state that he is in at any given point of time. It has to do with the believer’s walk, the way the believer lives and conducts himself.
There seems to be faulty interpretations being made as to a believer’s responsibility now that he is under grace. Wrong impressions are being left by some teachings on grace because of not distinguishing between a believer’s standing/position in Christ and his state/practice in the natural. The truths from the word of His grace address these TWO REALMS OF TRUTH and TWO REALMS OF EXISTENCE. There are those who see the truths of our position in Christ and leave the impression there is nothing we should do now that we are under grace. There are others who see the truths addressing our practice or responsibilities in Christ but do not present them as something we should do as a response to what God has already done.
Some have even taught that God only sees our perfect position in Christ and not our practice. If He does, He forgot to tell His Son Jesus who addressed the practices of Christians in the Churches in the Book of Revelation calling five of the seven to repent. If He doesn’t see our practice, how could the chastening of the Lord exist spoken of in Hebrews 12:5-11? No, He sees our position and our practice.
OUR POSITION OR TRUTH THAT DEALS WITH OUR STANDING (sometimes called positional truth)
Is the result of the work of Christ on the Cross.
2. It becomes mine by faith in Jesus the moment I am saved.
3. It is perfect and cannot be improved upon.
4. My position and standing is the same as every other child of God.
5. My position and standing is wholly based on grace.
OUR PRACTICE OR TRUTH THAT DEALS WITH OUR STATE (sometimes called temporal truth)
Is the result of my work, faithfulness, and practice.
2. It is what I am exhorted to do to match my position and standing.
3. My state falls short of perfection; it can improve or it can get worse.
4. My state is not the same as every other child of God.
5. My state is the basis of rewards that will be received.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation; old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new 2 Cor. 5:17 (POSITION). Yet Ephesians 4:24 says, “And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness (PRACTICE).”
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ Rom 5:1 (POSITION) Rom 5:1. “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful (PRACTICE) Colossians 3:17
Ephesians 1:6 says: “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved (POSITION).” “Wherefore we labor, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of Him” (PRACTICE) (2 Cor. 5:9).
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast (POSITION).v.10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus UNTO GOOD WORKS, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them (PRACTICE).