In 1 Corinthians 15:10. Paul proclaims: “I am what I am by the grace of God.
“There is nothing that will bend a man’s will like the recognition of divine love which is blessedness to come in contact with, and to obey.”
“You may try to sway him by motives of advantage and self-interest, and to thunder into his ears the pealing words of duty and right and ‘ought,’ and there is no adequate response.”
“You cannot soften a heart by the hammers of the law. You cannot force a man to do right by brandishing before him the whip that punishes doing wrong.”
“You cannot sway the will by anything but the heart; and when you can touch the deepest spring it moves the whole mass.” Maclaren biblehub.com
“You have seen some ponderous piece of machinery, which resists all attempts of a puny hand laid upon it to make it revolve. But down in one corner is a little hidden spring. Touch that and with majestic slowness and certainty the mighty mass turns.”
So the whole man is made mobile only by the touch of love; and the grace that comes to us, and says, ‘If ye love Me, keep My commandments…”
“…no power known and available which will lift a life to such heights of beauty and self-sacrificing nobility, as will the power that comes to us by communication of the grace that is in Jesus Christ.”
Grace is the vehicle by which God expresses his love to us. says Louis Sperry Chafer …but brings a paradox,
— a paradox defined:
- “…opposed to common sense and yet is perhaps true.
- …derives self-contradictory conclusions by valid deduction from acceptable premises.
- “a tenet contrary to received opinion.” Websters
Yes, Grace defies common sense, rational deductions and opinions and those who build a “personality” on such.
Personalities are constructed based on how a person wants others to perceive him.
The person then identifies himself of the fabricated personification.
However, Paul says instead, grace defines me.
Paul, In his epistle to Philippi, emphatically pronounces “I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,” And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:”
Christ and the righteousness by faith, spell “grace.”
All “other” stuff goes into the loss column. It gets labeled as “dung.”
I denounce my own religiousness, my own moral system, my own legalistic law-following to gain favor; my own ‘manipulating’ of God. I hate my own cry-baby routines, my own calculated opinions. I renounce my fear of exposure, my guilty conscience, my second-hand doctrines — Dung — and there’s so much more.
Some folks fear and are embarrassed by their weakness.
But, God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness.
In closing, some are wearied with the greatness of the way. Some are bored, some tired of waiting.
Others bear up in their wilderness, perfect the mundane, learn to find Him in desolate places.
God urges us all to learn patience.
Patience challenges the driving spirit — the striver, the meticulous planner. Patience challenges the overly-success motivated, the over-active personality. It rankles those who cover themselves with works, Isaiah 59. They can’t rest in their selves.
But, lack of patience puts us at odds with folks we minister to. because they move too slow for our liking. They don’t change fast enough.
Beloved, to live in the grace sphere, and identify ourselves as “grace people” may bring heart wrenching at many levels. Emotions must submit and then shut up. Opinions must take a back seat and then shut up. All manipulations, devices, and ego strategies must die, die die.
We wait on God. Love ya