Grace Brings God’s Rest

Grace Brings God’s Rest

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The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, old things have passed away; behold, all things are become new (NKJV).

We become a new creation spiritually, but our humanity still strives to please God by works. We hear man-made rules with the intent of giving advice for spiritual growth, but, they weigh us down with condemnation and guilt because the burden is on us for righteousness. A righteousness that cannot be obtained in that way. Rules such as:

You need attend to church regularly.

Read your Bible every day.

Reading the Bible in the morning is best.

Reading the Bible at night is best because you need God on your mind before your sleep.

Give an offering every Sunday.

Examine yourself all the time in case you sinned.

Participate in the church.

Study your Sunday School lesson.

Quit all your bad habits.

I remember the Sunday School envelopes I would fill out as a child. Scores were applied to achievements such as attendance, studying the Sunday School lesson and attending worship. When I could check every box and made 100%, I swelled with pride and thought surely God must be looking down from heaven with a smile on his face and putting a gold star next to my name on his roster. When I found out I didn’t earn God’s love and acceptance by what I do, I was set free from condemnation and guilt.

The hardest thing for a Christian to do is rest. We struggle to let go of works and simply accept grace.

Grace is God’s gift. No strings attached (Ephesians 2:8-9). If we were in God’s favor because of reading the Bible, giving an offering or quitting bad habits, then our salvation would be based on us instead of Jesus. The good things we do benefit us and are a fruit of knowing God but are not how we have an intimate relationship with Him.

Jesus paid the price. A very costly price. When we try to add to that sacrifice by our works we are saying Jesus didn’t do enough and we must help Him out.

Resting in Him requires labor but a different kind of labor than our works try to bring (Hebrews 4:9-10). We work to rest because most of our life on earth is performance based. Our humanity requires us to work at acceptance from employers, teachers and sometimes friends. We then approach God in the same way expecting to only receive favor from Him if we have been good enough.

When know we are accepted by Him simply because of what He did, we can rest.

Grace gives us rest.

 

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Barbara Latta About Barbara Latta

Barbara Latta’s desire is to help others find intimacy with God through a deeper understanding of the power of the Word. She writes a monthly column in her local newspaper and contributes to devotional websites and several anthologies. Her first book, God's Maps, Stories of Inspiration and Direction for Motorcycle Riders was released in March, 2018 and is available at Amazon. She serves as Chaplain for the Word Weavers Madison, Georgia chapter. Barbara posts on her blog.

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