Thursday, July 12, 2018

“Grace, Always”

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"Grace, Always"
    "By the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight… The law made nothing perfect… A man is not justified by the works of the law" (Romans 3:20; Hebrews 7:19; Galatians 2:16).
     "By grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God and not of works, let any man should boast" (Ephesians 2:8-9).

    No one has ever attained right standing with God by adherence to the law of Moses (or any other code of behavior).  Grace alone redeems human hearts, the freely given favor made possible by the Lord Jesus Christ to all who believe.  This involves both Old and New Testament saints.  Those who came to know the Lord under the law (Abraham, Samuel, Esther, David, Isaiah, et al.) were led to grace by God's personal working in their hearts to receive and believe His promises.  The old covenant also served the purpose for which it was given: "By the law is the knowledge of sin" (Romans 3:20).  The tenets of the law and the inability of its adherents to fulfill them revealed that humanity's problem does not begin with behavior, but with being.  Until we trust God for His redeeming grace, our hearts are dominated by sin and void of His indwelling presence (Romans 6:17; Ephesians 4:18).  Thus, the law revealed the inward problem that we cannot solve by our own efforts.  The Lord must do for us that which we cannot do for ourselves, providing forgiveness, justification, newness of life, and a heart changed by the power of God and the entrance of the Holy Spirit into our innermost being.  Whether in the limited light of the old covenant, or the bright sunlight of the New, the redeemed of the ages all sing the same anthem of freely given favor received by faith: "the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the Beloved.  In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace" (Ephesians 1:6-7).

   The Apostle Paul taught that the law of Moses can still serve a useful purpose.  "Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, for whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine" (I Timothy 1:-10).  Those who seriously and honestly consider the standards given to Moses in Mount Sinai must conclude that God's principles and practices do not align with unredeemed human hearts.  Again, "by the law is the knowledge of sin."  Even more, unredeemed human hearts do not align with the one human Heart acceptable to God, based on its spiritual and moral purity, namely, the Lord Jesus.  Christ was the righteousness of the law revealed in person, even as the law was Christ in revealed in principle.  Thus, He is our hope, even as He has always been the Savior of His people.  The grace of the Lord Jesus alone redeems us from our sins.  Grace, grace always.  This has and will forever be the way of salvation, a truth revealed by the law that could not save, but rather reveals our need for a Savior.

"For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect." 
(Hebrews 10:1)
"But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God, from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool. For by one offering He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified." 
(Hebrews 10:12; 14)

Weekly Memory Verse
    For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.
(John 1:17)


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