February 20, 2012
Did you know that there are no man-made limits to grace? When a person shows genuine repentance for sin, we should forgive them every time. Followers of Jesus Christ should always be about restoration. Many times, believers are more about judgment than restoration. Consider this study from the ministry, I am Second. According to I am Second, 87% of the world thinks Christians are judgmental. Eighty-five percent of the world thinks Christians are hypocritical. This is a reality which is sad, but true. How can people who have been saved by grace and mercy show no grace and mercy?
How can people who have been saved by grace and mercy show no grace and mercy?
Remember the story in the Bible when a woman got caught in the act of adultery? Consider John 8:3-11, “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?’ They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing Him. But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with His finger. When they kept on questioning Him, He straightened up and said to them, ‘If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.’ Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’ ‘No one, sir,’ she said. ‘Then neither do I condemn you,’ Jesus declared. ‘Go now and leave your life of sin.’”
The Pharisees caught her in the act! They got her. They couldn’t wait to bring her in front of Jesus for judgment. Here is my favorite part of the story because this shows the heart of Jesus Christ. I love this about our Lord – “But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with His finger.” I love that our Lord didn’t even look up to acknowledge this. Jesus knew they didn’t bring this woman there for restoration. Their hearts had no mercy and grace. They wanted judgment. Jesus Christ wouldn’t look up at them. I can serve a Lord like that. Look at what He said next, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” These people who needed mercy in their own lives had no intention of granting mercy to this woman. Sound familiar?
My friends, Jesus told the woman she wasn’t condemned and told her to go and leave her life of sin. He didn’t approve of her sin. Sin is the reason He later went to the cross. He died for my sins and the sins of all mankind. When we accept Christ as Lord and Savior, we accept that He paid our sin debt once and for all. Jesus Christ restored this sinner.
It is time we become more like Christ. Judgment needs to be replaced with mercy. Do you need grace and mercy in your life? We all do! God is in the business of restoration. He fixes broken things. The actual definition of restoration is to bring back to or put back into a former or original state. Sin has destroyed the original state of everything. The Lord Jesus Christ is bringing all things back to the original state.
I challenge us to be people of restoration. When we give grace and mercy, God will give us grace and mercy! Thank you, Lord, that You’re a friend to sinners – all of us!
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