|Posted by pastorsloan on September 3, 2012 at 8:40 PM||comments (0)|
GREEDY FOR GRACE
I’ve started preaching through the Ten Commandments recently, and it has left me feeling greedy. Yes, I said greedy. Greed is normally considered sinful, so how could looking deeply into the law of God lead me to be greedy? Because it has left me not greedy for the things of the world –be it riches, I am saddened by how greatly and how easily I break God’s law. But God has not left any of us to despair over being in such a state. He has given and continues to give abundant grace. This is the grace for which I have become very greedy.
I have become very greedy for SAVING GRACE. Eph2:8-9 says “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” When I look at my sin and I am caused to grieve, I am led back to Christ and His redeeming work. Even though I have been saved by grace through faith in Christ, I still continue to sin. So I still find myself needy for all-sufficient grace to cover over my continuing sin. If it were not for the eternally efficient sacrifice of Christ on my behalf, I (along with MANY others) would be without hope in this world. But I am greedy for the saving grace of Christ which never runs out, which continues to save, and continues to give hope. Yet this is not the only grace for which I am greedy.
I also find myself greedy for STRENGTHENING GRACE. The law of God reminds me of how weak I truly am, and how much I am in need of strength to do what the law requires that I might glorify God. In 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 Paul says,“ But hesaid to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” What still amazes me is that in my weakness I am able to find strengthening grace from the same savior who washes me clean by His blood. The author of Hebrews also speaks to this when He writes “Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (4:14-16) Whatever my weakness, whatever my temptation, Christ Jesus bids me come before the throne of grace to receive the grace and mercy I need.
Finally, I find myself in need of SUSTAINING GRACE. I find myself in need of the grace to see my way through this dark and dead world. We need the grace that gives us comfort. In 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 we find this kind of grace, “Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.” It is that grace, that hope, that comfort, is which we are sustained in a work that seeks to break us down.
If you can look at the 10 Commandments and not see a need for grace, then I suggest that you have not looked deeply into the Law of God in all of its fullness. When we look deeply into the Law of God we discover how greatly we break the Law. When I see that I can not help but be greedy for it.
What is great about seeking the grace of God is that there is always enough. It is not like going to your favorite buffet or restaurant with a salad bar and hoping that the people in front of you don’t take all of what you wanted. We come to the banquet of the all sufficient God whose grace never runs out. Paul says in 1 Tim 1:14 “the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.” God’s grace never runs out like the flower and oil of the widow in 1 Kings 17 in whose house Elijah said. God’s grace is always abundant like the fish and bread multiplied by our savior for the crowd to be able to eat. God’s grace is always available, alwaysenough for us who find ourselves in such desperate need of it. May you be left greedy for the grace of God knowing it is you will never be left in need.