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The law versus grace— where do you belong? (Part 2)

gracetidings:with dr doug mamvura

“For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).

Christ is the end of the law (Romans 10:4). Apostle Paul also makes it clear under which dispensation do we fall- “For sin shall have no dominion over you for you are no longer under the law but under grace” (Romans 6:14).

It is very important for one to understand that although we are no longer under the law, it doesn’t mean that law is evil. In fact, law is Holy. However, it is not through our observance of law that we are saved.

Romans 10:4 states that, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes”. This means that people no longer become righteous, or justified in the sight of God, by how well they perform the deeds of the Law. The Old Testament Law still reveals to us God’s holiness, which we should seek to emulate. It must be understood, however, that our failure to comply does not bring the punishments pronounced in the Law since Jesus bore those for us (Galatians 3:13). Our compliance does not earn the blessings of God either; those only come by faith in Christ (Romans 4:8-13).

Ephesians 2: 15 states that, “having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is law of commandments contained in ordinances”. Jesus totally rendered the Old Testament law idle or useless by nailing it to His cross. Colossians 2:14, says “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross.”

This confirms the fact that the coming of Christ, rendered the use of law useless as a way to obtain salvation hence in Romans 7:3, Apostle Paul says “you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ that you may be married to Him”.

Grace came through Jesus Christ. The word grace is mentioned 170 times in King James Bible, 124 times in NIV and 137 times in New King James Version. Grace is not that one sentence prayer that you have before a meal. It is such a deep word. I find it very unfortunate that there are people who don’t want to hear about this Gospel of grace and yet that is the backbone of Christianity. Grace is God giving us what we don’t deserve such us as Eternal life or Salvation. It is also Him not giving us what we deserve such as hell.

We are saved by grace through faith not works lest anyone should boast (Ephesians 2:8-9). In Acts 20:32 Apostle Paul says “So now brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified”. The word of Grace is able to build us up in faith and make us grow in the knowledge of Him.

This is why we need to grow in grace and the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). Some think that grace is giving people license to sin and yet the bible says in Titus 2:11 “the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly and righteously and godly in the present age”. It just shows how some of us don’t read our bibles.

Grace is what establishes our hearts and yet some of us are so occupied with strange doctrines in our churches despising the Gospel of grace. “Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them” (Hebrews 13:9).

It is God’s grace that gives us power or strength beyond human ability. Paul says I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. We see him confessing about his “thorn in the flesh” stating that though he pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from him, the Lord said “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness”. Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Therefore, I take pleasure in my infirmities, in reproaches, in needs in persecutions, in distress, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am string” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10).

Grace is the strength and power in human weakness. There is no need to cover up our weaknesses. It is through my weaknesses that the power and strength of Christ can rest upon me. Some of us are very proud. We don’t realise that we are what we are by the grace of God. There is nothing we have that we haven’t received.

God is not impressed with our human wisdom or strength. Instead it is through our faith that He is pleased. Some of us we boast so much about our own accomplishments and go to the extend of even buying degrees or doctorates so we can impress people out there. Yet Paul says I have counted all my accomplishments as dung. If only we could realise the power of God’s grace in our lives. When we rely on His grace, we are able to do exceedingly abundantly above that which we can think or imagine according to the power that is at work within us”.

In 1 Corinthians 15:9, Apostle Paul says “For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain, but I laboured more abundantly than they all, yet not I but the grace of God which was with me.” This confirms that grace is the power of God to do what we can’t do outside His grace. I have also witnessed God’s grace in my own life. There are certain accomplishments that I have made in my life that when I look back, I can clearly see the power of His grace and on my own I wouldn’t have done it. Most of us we forget that because we are too proud.

Finally, we see how grace can level the mountains in our own lives. In Zachariah 4: 6-8, “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit says the Lord of hosts.

Who are you O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain! And he shall bring forth the capstone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!”.

It doesn’t matter how high the mountain may be. It could be the mountain of poverty, sickness, bad relationships, joblessness or lack. If you shout to that mountain grace and command it move away like we see in Mark 11:23, it will go. However, it takes faith to get results. God can make a way where there is no way. There is nothing impossible with Him.

Without Him we can do nothing. His grace is so amazing that whilst we were still sinners, Christ came and died for us. He who knew no sin became sin so we could become the righteousness of God. Though He was rich, yet for our sake He became poor so you and I would become rich. All we need is to boldly approach His throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
It is through His grace that we are able to reign as kings on this earth “For if by one man’s offence death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:17). The word doesn’t say those who received the law shall reign but those who receive “abundance of grace”. We need abundant grace to reign in this life as kings. This is why I get surprised when some people despise the Gospel of grace. May God open the eyes of some of us that we can clearly see what His grace has brought upon our lives.

l Dr Doug Mamvura is a graduate of Charis Bible School. Feedback: drdoug@corporatemomentum.biz or Twitter @dougmamvura

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