Is Grace Meaningless?

Morality cannot be legislated. This is the reason God sent Jesus. I think as followers of Christ, we sometimes forget that this whole thing is about the heart of man, not his ability to physically follow a command. I should know. I tried to make it about the physical at one time. Every time Jesus informed the crowd that he wanted their hearts to be pure, not just their actions, it shocked them. Probably because they knew, just like we do, that it is impossible for our hearts to be pure.

It is impossible.

Their is such arrogance wrapped up in religion and ritual. Jesus got downright angry with the leaders of Israel. They knew the law and they knew how to look good but their hearts were dirty with immorality. He got angry because of the deception they were breeding. They were deceiving the people into thinking that they could actually earn their purity. They were preaching that God's grace and mercy could be bought. That's the same thing we declare when we try to legislate morality.

If grace can be bought with our actions, it is meaningless.

Righteousness can not be bought or earned with a pretty little life, packaged with the right words and deeds. The only righteousness we can declare is Jesus. The only way my actions can mean anything is if Jesus stands before God's throne, pleading my case with his innocent blood. There is no "but". There is no exception. When we say "God offers grace, but.." we are already wrong. I said that many times before God straightened me out. I really couldn't accept that my morality, my ability to do good did not make me righteous. Even in a moment that I do good, I still have a past of doing wrong. Now, I say, "God offers endless grace and because he does I..." Do you hear the difference? Getting a hold of just what God is offering sparks a fire in my soul to follow and obey. I don't want to know how much I can get away with, I want to know what I have to do to be like him. To say God offers you endless grace but that doesn't mean you can mess up is a contradiction. Either it's endless or it's not.

Well, I now know that it is endless because it is impossible for me not to mess up. Until the day I die, I will be in continuous need of His endless grace. It is because of this seed of total acceptance he has planted in me that I have a burning passion to obey, to do good, to be like him. I'm not trying to earn my morality, I'm trying to be free of my flesh. Do you get it friends? Do you see the power of this unfathomable grace? Stop asking how much you can get away with and start living out the grace and mercy that fills your soul! That is the cry of the cross. Be free of the burden of your imperfection! Be free of your immorality! Jesus is literally bringing you back to life when you choose him. Before him you walk only in death. He bore your death with much anguish. He bore your immorality on his own body. He bore the weight of eternity for you. Be redeemed in the truth!

I hope you hear passion in this and not anger. When I talk about grace and righteousness through Jesus, it sets my heart ablaze. Perhaps it is because I once walked in the bondage of religion. Perhaps it is because I know what it's like to try and legislate morality in my own life and how much I failed. I have been redeemed only because God chose to redeem me. Jesus defines righteousness in me. Oh, I could do a good deed and get it right on the outside, but without Jesus, I have not been excused from being born with the seed of sin in my heart.

This is a bold stand my friends, I know that. There are those that would disagree with this, that would still say we must act like Christians to receive grace and mercy. I answer that with God's word to me in Galatians...

"But suppose we seek to be made right with God through faith in Christ and then we are found guilty because we have abandoned the law. Would that mean that Christ has led us into sin? Absolutely not! Rather, I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of the law I already tore down. For when I tried to keep the law it condemned me. So I died to the law - I stopped trying to meet all its requirements - so that I might live for God. My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die." Gal. 2: 17-25

God's grace should never be an excuse to live a meaningless life. On the contrary, God's grace is the reason to live a life full of truth and freedom. Don't be fooled. God will not be mocked. You will sow whatever you reap,  not be because God decided you did not earned enough grace but because you have been given freedom, through grace, to choose. You and I have been handed a great power my friends...a power that changes the world. If we choose to stop dictating righteousness to others and instead choose to hold the mantle high of God's grace and mercy..well...I think we can help Him change the world...

we can change the world..

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