How, according to the Bible, are believers to live holy lives?
By putting ourselves fully under God’s grace. When your heart is overflowing with God’s grace and loving-kindness, you will have no desire to commit adultery or murder, bear false witness, or covet. You will have the power to love your neighbor as yourself. By being firmly rooted and established in the grace of God, you will have the power to love because He first loved you! This is why the Bible declares in Romans 13:10 that “love is the fulfillment of the law.”
In fact, when God’s people are under grace, not only do they fulfill the letter of the law, they also exceed it and go the extra mile. The law commands you not to commit adultery, and there are people who can fulfill just the letter of the law and not commit adultery outwardly. However, inwardly they have no love for their spouses. Grace changes all that. Grace doesn’t just deal with the surface; it goes deeper and teaches a man to love his wife as Christ loved the church. In the same way, the law can command a person not to covet, but it has no ability to make a person generous. Again, God’s grace goes beyond the superficial to inwardly transform a covetous heart into a heart that is loving, compassionate, and generous.
In Luke 19:2–10, where you find Jesus meeting and ministering to Zacchaeus, notice that not a single commandment was given. Yet when the love and grace of our Lord Jesus touched his heart, the once-covetous tax collector wanted to give half of his wealth to the poor and repay fourfold every person he had stolen from. The love of money died when the love of Jesus came. This is what happens to people who encounter the Lord Jesus and His grace.
Excerpted from Grace Revolution, chapter 10, Glorious Grace.