Kiss Of Grace
By: Danny Wallace
I wonder if Jesus ever imagined what it would mean to be a Christian in 2016? Surely He did, after all; Jesus is the beginning and the end, He understands our heart. How it must break His heart to watch us gather in select groups and enter into endless debates about who loves God and who God favors vs.
Modern day Christians have become the epitome of schoolyard children who fight for what they perceive to be their place in the pecking order of life. It's a constant struggle to see who will come out on top and who will be decreed by God’s elite to be at the bottom of His “favor pile?” It is a scene that pushes the emotions of a novice onlooker to vacillate between weeping for the sheer waste of time and energy and wanting to take a few bullies out behind the woodshed for a lesson in basic human respect.
One thing is crystal clear. It 's hard to lead others when you don’t know where you are going. It is impossible to give someone something if you’re not even sure what you have. When it comes to the absolute, unequivocal gift of Grace through the sacrifice of God’s blood through His perfect Son, Jesus; we have no idea what we possess.
The best we’ve been able to do for the past 2000 years is argue among ourselves while seeking a position of greater importance in God’s Kingdom righteousness.
It has gotten much worse as our Lord’s return grows nearer. As we sense the time nearer than it was yesterday, we have escalated our desire for power and position to the point of assaulting those who live for nothing more than the joy of treasuring the gift of Grace.
We’ve invented new terms like, hyper-grace, and greasy grace to designate whom religion deems as the greatest of sinners; those who believe Jesus has finished the demands of the Law with a performance we could never hope to top.
One group shouts, “Come, follow us! God has given us the formula to win His approval!” Another group shouts, “No, they are heretics - walk with us! We have a prophet among us who is correct over 80% of the time! He will lead us into God’s favor!”
Some voices tell us to change denominations – declaring that we are currently involved in one that God does not recognize while assuring us that He surely knows theirs. Some say we should pray more while others say you must begin to take communion every day to win God’s favor. Some say we should stop drinking wine, while others say that God favors those who understand they can drink some wine, as long as they don't drink to excess.
Some say you “must” go to a denominational church meeting every Sunday morning and evening, as well as every Wednesday night. Others say just Sunday morning will do. Some say you can leave off Sunday evening only if you make sure to go on a Wednesday evening in its place. Others say that to attend any worship service on any day but Saturday is a violation of Old Covenant Law regarding the Sabbath and therefore, it is a sin to worship on any day other than the Old Testament Sabbath. In the midst of this chaos, the Son of the Living God hangs like a mangled piece of meat upon a rugged cross as if He were nothing more than a bull, a goat, or a lamb. In our way, we cast “our righteousness” as lots for His precious garment.
I understand the anger of the world at Christianity as I have never understood it before. As a Christian, I am often embarrassed to say that I am even a part of Christianity, considering the scramble I see among us for who will be deemed worthy to sit at the right hand of Jesus? We have sharpened our teeth upon the bones of many a devoured brother or sister in Christ in this futile argument, while our lips remain parched from the withholding of God’s kiss of love upon the cheek of a broken humanity.
May the Holy Spirit fall on us fresh and new today. Let us pray that God will saturate our hearts with the real knowledge of what we have so we can cease the fight to obtain what is worthless.