We are born again by the will of God. Faith being a result of that new birth. The natural man is in bondage to his fallen will. God's grace is central to the Gospel. John 1:13; 1 Cor 1:30; 1 Cor 2:14; Eph 2:5. Man is spiritually dead and must be quickened to life. The spiritual picture of resurrection. The natural man cannot hear or believe God. 1 Cor 2:14; John 10:27; Eph 2:1,5. God chose us, we did not choose God. No man seeks after God. Chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world. Predestined. called, and justified by God. Eph 1:4; Rom 3:11; John 15:16-19; Rom 8:30.
All three of the following are a work of God: Our physical birth, our new birth, and our heavenly celestial birth (Rapture). Of which we had and will have nothing to do with. Jer 1:5; John 1:13; 1 Thess 4:17. God has forgiven us of all sin, past and future. Our sins have been cast as far as the east is from the west. Buried in the depths of the sea, to be remembered no more. The sin issue has been forever settled. Col 2:13; Psalm 103:12; Jer 31:34; Micah 7:19. We are made the righteousness of God in Christ. God calls us Saints. We stand before Him holy, unblameable, and unreprovable in His sight. This position is unchangeable. Eph 1:1; Rom 3:21,22.
Our new birth did not eradicate our sinful nature. The new man and old man are in constant conflict with one another. 1 John 1:8; Gal 5:17; Romans 7:14-25. God has nothing to do with our old nature, the flesh. It will never change, but will only become worse over time. The Christian life is not cleaning up the old man. It is why we had to be made a new creation where Christ could abide. The new man cannot sin. John 6:63; 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15; 1 John 3:9; John 5:39,40. We are to daily reckon ourselves dead to sin, and alive unto God. It is a vital ongoing activity, and is the first command given us in Romans chapter 6 verse 11. All Righteousness is of God. His righteousness is imputed unto us. That same righteousness becomes evident in our experience as we trust God. This is a righteousness based on faith. We can never become any more righteous by what we do or do not do. Rom 3:10; Rom 1:17; Romans 5:1; John 5:39,40.
This righteousness of God is manifest through two means: The Fruit of the Spirit, and the manifest life of Christ Himself. As branches, we are to abide in the Vine, Christ, through whom it is produced. Gal 5:22; 2 Cor 2:14; John 15:1-4. We are to rest in God's timing as it regards our spiritual growth. This includes times of dryness and desert which we pass through. Heb 4:11. Job 23:10. We have died not only to sin, but self, the law, the world, satan, and death itself. Unless we have died to the law, we cannot live unto God. Rom 6:11; Gal 2:20; Rom 7:4,6; Gal 2:19; Gal 6:14; John 5:24; 1 John 5:18; John 5:39,40. Law serves no place in the believer's life except to drive us to Christ who is our Life. Through the law comes the knowledge of sin. The very strength of sin is the law. The law is not made for a righteous man, which is who we are. Rom 3:21; 1 Cor 15:56; Rom 3:20; Gal 3:24. Rom 7:9; Gal 2:19.
God always, always love us. He doesn't allow anything to touch our lives except it be for our ultimate good. He always has our best in mind. And He always causes us to triumph. Rom 8:28; 1 Cor 2:14; Rom 1:7. God is supremely sovereign over every minute detail of our lives. He promises to complete that which He began in us, to remain faithful, even when we are not. He promised never to leave nor forsake us. Heaven is certain, and assured. 2 Tim 2:13; Phil 1:6; Phil 2:13; 1 Kings 8:57; John 5:24; 1 John 3:14. We are to enter into this rest, ceasing from our own works, as He did from His when He lived in complete dependance upon the Father who worked through Him. We are no different. Christ is our Life. Not our example. Example = law. Life = grace. Heb 4:10; 11; Col 3:4; John 5:39,40.
The modern, human merit based religious system is primarily one of law and self righteousness, the same exact religious system our Lord confronted during His life. John 5:39,40; Mat 23, Galatians, the entire Epistle. And hundreds more verses woven throughout the Word from Genesis to Revelation. The believer living under grace not law undergoes the same persection by this world religious system as Christ did. An unjustified hatred without a cause. John 15:18-25. Such persecution leads to further spiritual growth in grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. Mat 5:11; Luke 6:22; 2 Peter 3: 15-18; Rom 8:18.