2 Kings 7-9 John 1:1-28
“Because he was full of grace and truth, from him we all received one gift after another. The law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” (John 1:16-17 NCV)
Religion under a system of laws is much like the old song: “You load sixteen tons and whattaya get? Another day older and deeper in debt.” Having to follow a list of rules and regulations is mentally and emotionally draining. You go through the day, fearful that you might break one of the rules on the “don’t list” and forget to do one of the things on the “do list.” Grace is different. John describes Jesus as being full of grace and truth. We get the truth about our sinfulness, but it’s covered in grace. The result is like every day is Christmas and we receive one gift after another from God. Instead of going “deeper in debt” because I do the don’ts and don’t do the do’s, I recognize when I’m wrong, but can celebrate the forgiveness that comes from God because of His love – the love that He showed us in Jesus Christ.
The entrance of Jesus in the world, and in our lives changes the lyrics to that song. Instead of going deeper in debt, now we gain forgiveness and grace. We don’t follow a list of rules and regulations, we have fellowship with God. My wife and I have an amazing relationship. We don’t have that relationship because I’ve given her my list of do’s and don’ts and she’s given me her list, we have that relationship because we love each other enough to forgive each other and show grace when one of us messes up. Sometimes though, as much grace as we show each other, it takes a little longer to show and feel the grace when the other one messes up. God never delays grace. He forgives me even before I know I messed up (aka sinned) most of the time. In fact, I’ve never surprised God with my sins. He’s always dealt with me by letting me know the truth about my sin but forgiving me all the same. That’s truth and grace in action.
Lord, thank You that we’re able to have a relationship with You based on grace and truth instead of rules and regulations. Guide me to live a life that’s pleasing to You even as You forgive me when I mess up.
Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.