Sunday Collectives 3/13/17 – 3/19/17
Since we are discussing grace it should be considered with this question. So perhaps the question would become “What role does the law play as compared to the role grace plays in my life, now that I am a Christian?”
Before we get much further let’s place some basic understandings on what the law is and what grace is. So that when we speak of either we have a basic understanding of what we are referring to.
By Chad West
As a Christian, we can’t quite bridge the divide between sharing our faith and living it. It’s like a playwright wondering if advertising for actors to be in his play is as important as putting it on. James get a bad rap as a theological wet blanket, but this is all he was saying. Faith without works is meaningless. Not that works earn faith, but that they are a natural evidence of it. Because of God’s Spirit working in us to will and do, we will do. But what does that look like?
In the bible, there is Law and there is Gospel. One has to do with our duty to perform, and the other has to do with God’s promise to perform. In order to properly understand theology, one must clearly define these two concepts. In doing theology and thinking biblically, one must always distinguish between the two, and they must never be divorced.
There is something so sacredly beautiful in the announcement of forgiveness. Just three words alone, “You are forgiven” can unbind a burdened conscience, restore a broken relationship, and free a troubled soul.
As my pastor says, “Forgiveness is the very air we breathe.”
Without forgiveness all we have is guilt and shame. Without forgiveness we cannot approach those we have hurt. Without forgiveness we dare not take one step forward toward the Throne of Grace.
These are strange days. Do you feel it? Do you feel the uncertainty of this season, the cacophony of voices constantly clashing around us? Do you feel the opinions flying fast and furious, fear tightening its grip, discord having its day?
But deeper than all of that – beneath the surface of frenzy and friction – do you see the hearts longing to know that they are seen and safe, that the future is secure, that someone is for them? Do you see hearts looking for hope?
By Mike Adams
I had made theology my pursuit. My goal. My aim. My identity. And I was pretty good at it too. I could go toe to toe with the best and I was proud of that. Don’t get me wrong. Good theology is necessary. But theology apart from a heart captured by the gospel is reduced to dangerous information. It’s ammunition to win an argument. It’s fodder for a blog. It’s food for one’s pride. Theology not rooted in grace and removed from the gospel can make us hard, indifferent, proud, cold, and right all the time.