Tag: prayer

The Law and Grace: Not What You Think

The Law and Grace: Not What You Think

When you hear “The Law” mentioned in Christendom and Judaism, people are referring to the sum of about 600+ laws given by God through Moses to the people of Israel. God gave them numerous laws, rituals, and regulations, meant to keep them pure and holy.

Many have created resources that attempt to provide understanding of the functionality of the Law and Grace in our lives as believers today. It is a point of great spiritual and doctrinal controversy.

Some believe we ought to still keep the law as strictly as the Israelites of old. Some postulate that because of the Messiah’s sacrifice, we are no longer under law, but under grace; and are free from the requirements of the Law.

What makes these conversations so difficult to process is because of the various verses that speak to how the Law and Grace operate in our lives today. It can be difficult to interpret them.

One of our biggest obstacles for understanding Law vs. Grace is our desire to believe a specific thing. Some WANT to believe we have to follow the Law in the specific way in which the Israelites did. Some WANT to believe that GOD’S grace cancels the Law.

For some, following the Law seems to be too oppressive and it doesn’t sound like God to them. For others, Grace seems to offer more freedom than they could fathom God giving.

This is proof that we take our perceptions of God into conversations like these and refuse to expand our view of Him.

No matter where you fall on the proverbial spectrum of this idea, choose to lay down your preconceived notions to perceive God in a new way. Allow God to reveal Himself afresh to you. There are some things we believe because they’re true. Then, there are things we believe because we’d prefer to believe them.

It’s dangerous to get to a place in which God doesn’t surprise you anymore–or God agreeing with EVERYTHING you do, say, or think. At that point, I’d begin to question whether or not it’s God you serve–but you.

I’ve been craving depth in my relationship with the Most High and understanding of who He is. I’ve prepared myself to think and live differently depending on what He reveals about Himself, me, and others.

I don’t want to believe what I believe because it’s comfortable for me. I want to believe what He says is true. Sometimes, that will put me in a position to look foolish to the world and that’s okay; because I’m not living for them.

I live for God in hopes that others would see and know Him. But He is my Authenticator, my Refuge, my Father, my Friend, my Savior, my Deliverer, my Judge, my Answer, my Everything.

My prayer is that if you’ve made it to the end of this post that you receive the blessed opportunity of knowing Him.

You can pray this prayer below and continue on a journey of knowing Him. Once you pray this prayer in belief and faith, there are some things that will automatically change. You may not feel it, but it has.

There are other things that will require a journey of becoming in relationship with Most High (God). Have faith and be encouraged.

Most High,

Thank You for revealing Yourself to me. I believe what you’ve shown me. I believe that You sent Your Son to Earth to die to reconcile me to You. I believe He resurrected in victory over sin and death — the very things that separated me from having relationship with You. I have faith and believe that You are the one true God. Thank You for saving me. I ask that You continue to show me who You are and teach me Your ways. My heart will never be separated from You. I ask that You connect me with people who will help me grow in my relationship with You and knowledge of You. Thank You for loving me.

In Your Son’s Name,
Amen.

Scriptures to study: (the whole Bible…but here’s a few to get started)

  1. John 1-3
  2. Romans 6-8
  3. Genesis 1-3
What Would Christians Do Pt. 1

What Would Christians Do Pt. 1

W.W.J.D.

What Would Jesus Do? In the 1990’s, this acronym became very popular in Christendom. For some, it became more than a cool catch phrase and more of a personal conviction. It encouraged Christians to respond in the same way they presumed Christ would respond.

You can read further about this acronym and its effects on Christendom here or here. Funnily enough, UrbanDictionary.com had a definition of its own. They have some pretty hilarious examples of how this phrase could be used. “WWJD? Well for starters, he probably wouldn’t purchase and wear tacky jewelry.”  “I’m not sure if I should write this webpage script in Perl, Java or PHP. Hmm, What Would Jesus do?”

With any catchphrase or cliche, the effect wears off eventually. Maybe, it should. I believe there comes a point at which you don’t have to ask ‘what would Yeshua do’ anymore. Instead, we ask ‘what will Yeshua do’ through me. The word ‘would’ implies a condition. “I would do this if ______.” It provides space for excuse. Instead, as a believer, I say, “I will do this because _______.”

What’s your ‘because?’ The Bible says, “So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” (2 Cor. 5:20).

If your ‘because’ is anything other than the fact that God desires to reconcile others to Himself through you, refocus on what is important. It’s not about having the best ministry. It’s not about having the most followers. It’s not about being well-liked. When people encounter you, you ought to be a ‘deflector’ and ‘reflector.’ Before people can become enamored by how great you are, you ought to point them to the Source: Christ.

So, what will you do? What will you say? What will you think?

This is not to promote condemnation, comparison, or competition. This is not a question to answer based on how others are answering. This a question to open up a dialogue between you and God. ‘God, what would you have me to do?’ ‘God, what will you have me to do?’

I believe at the heart of this phrase (WWJD) is a need to acknowledge God in our decisions. It reminds us to be sensitive to the heart and will of God. We can’t go on living like what we do, say, or think doesn’t matter. Everything you do is perceived as a direct representation of who God is. The moment you say, “I’m a Christian,” you’re being watched. You’re being examined. People can’t help but to examine you. Don’t let this scare you. At best, let it be a sobering wake-up call if you’ve been thinking your life and how you live it doesn’t matter. Don’t be worried. The Spirit of God will empower you to live in a way worthy of the call you’ve accepted.

Further Study: 2 Corinthians 5:11-21

Currently, at my church, we’re going through a series called DETOX. Week Two’s message really speaks to some of the things written in this post. Watch the video here. Skip ahead to minute 37 and continue from there. Pastor Marcus Howard is a man well-studied on this subject and provides a comprehensive and practical training on this topic.

I hope you enjoyed reading this! This post was meant to lay the groundwork for the rest of the series.

We’re going to continue this series by answering some questions about the Christian’s lifestyle. Two questions will include: ‘Should Christians Go to Secular Parties?’ and ‘Should Christians Listen to Secular Music?’

So, stay updated.

Happy reading!

Over and out.

 

*The featured photo is from http://www.mercworks.net I do not own the rights to the photo or the photo itself.*