Saying that we need to balance grace with works is similar to saying that we need to balance breathing air with suffocation. There is no balance; you either breathe air or you die. People try to grasp some of these concepts about God by introducing the idea of balance in a nonsensical way.
Think about it like a normal person for just a second: how can you say He was sacrificed for sins and then say that if you sin, the sacrifice is no good?
People are proud of their idealism. They believe that their high standards and their perfectionism are a sign of integrity and success. Actually our ideals are weapons that will ultimately turn on us and kill us. What we need is a rescue and an escape from our ideals. We need to be seen and loved and accepted and forgiven as we really are, and we need a way to love others the same way. This is exactly what the gospel offers us!
Here is some counsel I gave someone who is a true and beautiful believer but who is having trouble, perhaps because of some bad teaching in their past, accepting that their faith in Christ is true: When Jesus died and said “it is finished”, it was finished. It is not dependent on some change in […]
“Someone died for this slightly off-base irritating brother. He is Abel offering his blood sacrifice, and love says I count his offering as sufficient.” From the book Grace in Community by Jim McNeely I wanted to return to the very powerful and fruitful story of Cain and Abel as it pertains to the idea of […]
We, as a group, are a community of sinners who have mercy and grace in His blood. We are new creatures in Christ, but sin still lives on in us as a kind of living dead zombie presence. We should be very very clear that the heart of the gospel is not that we are personally transformed. It is that we are justified. We are redeemed. We are reconciled.
In a recent post, Peter Rollins brings up an interesting idea about how many people base their relationships on what I would call false grace: … religion doesn’t simply offer a set of positions to conform to, it also offers the acceptable ways in which one can transgress these positions: it tells us both how […]
A freewheeling discussion about discipleship under grace with Jim McNeely and Dax Swanson. How did Jesus actually do discipleship? The answer is surprising! How does the gospel of grace inform our notion of discipleship?
The age old question: What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? Romans 6:1 (NASB) Why does this question keep coming up? Does grace grant us a license to sin? Why is this such an issue? This question is the perennial nut at the root of almost […]
I work in a very technical field. Right now I am between jobs, so I am learning some new things that a potential employer requires me to know. I will admit that I am very very tired of feeling overwhelmed and out of my depth. In my entire career in IT, I can’t remember a […]