Thursday, September 12, 2013

Receive the Gift

For the law brings wrath, but where there
is no law there is no transgression. That is
why it depends on faith, in order that the
promise may rest on grace and be
guaranteed to all his offspring—not only
to the adherent of the law but also to the
one who shares the faith of Abraham…
                            Romans 4:15-16 

     John Stott says, “Faith’s only function is to receive what grace offers.” C.S. Lewis wrote, “A man whose hands are full of parcels can’t receive a gift.” Romans 4:16 tells us that God’s promise is a pure gift. Anyone who has faith to believe may receive the gift of God’s grace.

     Many might ask, “Is it possible to receive God’s gift of grace without strict adherence to God’s law?” Others believe that if one commandment of God is broken, redemption may not be possible. Some believe that there is evil beyond God’s grace to forgive.

     There are those that I might like to exclude from God’s gift of grace. The abominable leader that commits atrocities against his own citizenry, the one who takes from a child their innocence and purity or those who stand defiantly cursing God—any of them might find their names on my list of unworthy of God’s grace.

     But God peered through the ages, saw every sin, and He extended His gift of grace to all. Revelation 22:17 is a beautiful portrait of God’s outstretched hand of grace, “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely.”

     “Come, everyone who thirsts…” (Isaiah 55:1) It is a matter of life and death—a universal invitation to receive the gift of life offered by Almighty God. It is impossible for any man or woman to walk a lifetime without breaking God’s law. But without God’s law we would have no knowledge of our transgressions. The law was given by God to make us aware of our need for His grace. Christ came to be a visible extension of God’s grace to mankind.

     Creation, the Cross of Christ, the empty tomb all cry out to fallen man—He is alive, He is real, He is calling your name. Please, open your heart and receive the gift.

©JP 2013

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