Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Grace that Kills

I found this piece a few days ago and thought I should share. God bless you
If God loves us so much that he forgives all our sins then we might as well keep on sinning.”  A passing remark that I have heard a few different times but a very false one.  We, Christians, like to assume that our faith is our own.  Which our faith is very personal but our own faith directly affects others around us for the better or the worse.  The world privatizes not only pocketbooks and sex, but our faith as well.  This privatization can lead to making God into a vending machine. We put in a dollar, then choose our favorite refreshment. But our faith isn’t about our desires or what we get out of our faith.  Our faith is centered on Jesus Christ and denial of self.
“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?      
By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life (Romans 6:1-4).”
Paul dealt with this lie many years ago and now we, Christians, face this lie.  We face this lie every morning when we wake up and roll out of the bed. Will you decide to believe the lie that God will continue to forgive you so you can…..well…..continue on sinning?  Yes, God’s grace covers all sin.  But don’t abuse his grace and say, “might as well keep on sinning.”  Allow God to take his grace and kill this side of us.  Allow God to bring you into a life you could never imagine.  I hope you feel inspired when you hear an amazing sermon, see God’s redemptive work in the world and experience God’s grace.  But we were baptized into this death with Christ so that we can have a new live with Christ.
This life is characterized by death to our self and acceptance into the kingdom of God.  A kingdom that is here on this earth working right now.  Paul, who wrote Romans, lived a life that was full of sin.  He killed Christians.  Can you image how personal that sin felt?  But God’s grace restored not only Paul’s sight but his heart of stone.  “And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26).”  Will you decide to continue on with a heart of stone? Or will you allow God to take your heart of stone and kill it.  Allowing God’s amazing grace to penetrate your whole being and replacing your heart of stone with one of flesh.  Paul realized his sin and turned toward God.  Will we, Christians, realize our sin and turn towards Christ?  Prayerful consider how God is moving in your heart and reread Romans 6:1-4 again.  Let the word of God penetrate your heart of stone.  Let God’s grace kill this lie in our life.  A grace that kills is a grace that redeems and leads to a new life.