grace blog

Author: jerry

You really can’t fully appreciate that Romans 3:24 without taking a closer look at the word translated as “freely” in our English bibles. The word, in Greek, is “dórean”. This word literally means “without cause”. So, in this verse, Paul is declaring that we are not only justified freely (freely declared to righteous) but without any particular cause in ourselves as well.
It’s an interesting fact that the Gospel of John, which claims to be written that the one reading it “might believe”, never once employs the word “repentance”. After all, many professing Christians will argue that it is impossible for anyone to be saved without true genuine repentance. And I agree, but first we must ask, “What exactly is repentance?
One of the most misunderstood passages in the Bible is the story of the Rich Young Ruler, in Matthew 19. The purpose of the story was not to teach people to the importance of being fully dedicated, fully surrendered and willing to forsake all in order to obtain eternal life. The point was to demonstrate the utter foolishness of thinking we can do anything to earn our salvation.
There are so many reasons to live in fear but one very important reason not to. GOD. After all, recent events have taught me two things. One, I have no idea what the future holds for me and my family. I may live another 50 years. I could die tomorrow. The same applies to every member of my family. If I place my faith in my health or anyone else’s, I’m going to be disappointed.
Whenever I go on social networks, I can’t help but notice that Christians tend to drift into two extremes. Some people are very good at sharing the truth about sin but lousy at demonstrating the love of God. Others are all about loving everyone but do so to the detriment of truth. But truth and love are of equal importance.
Recently I have spent more time reading through the gospels and I have found so many gems that were always there but I simply never noticed them before. Take for example the Parable Of The Two Debtors (Luke 7:36-50). The story is about two men who owe a debt a creditor, one 50 denarii and the other 500 denarii.
Miley Cyrus isn’t my favorite singer but I really like this song. It speaks truth. Sometimes we lose our focus. We can get so caught up in laying hold of the prize that we forget to enjoy the process of getting there. Heaven certainly is the hope for every Christian but it’s in the climb that relationship with God is forged and deepened.
If there was one thing I learned from our time living with and caring for Jenn’s grandfather, it was that sometimes you just have to “roll with the punches.” Every time he’d take a fall, he’d get himself up, smile and say, “I’m OK. I rolled with the punches.” I really didn’t know exactly what that phrase meant but I understood that he was communicating that, yeah, he took a fall but the fall didn’t get the best of him.
“Changed mind equals changed life.” I’ve heard that line, or some variation, many times. They will say that “repentance” is all about turning one’s life around for salvation or promising to turn one’s life around after salvation. “It’s a change in motives,” they say.