Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Romans 3 - Righteousness Vs. The Law: By Gift Vs. By Works

Growing up I loved reading through Romans. So cut and dried. Black and White. It may be considered a strange book for a young girl to appreciate as much as I did and do. But if you know me, you know I love cut and dried, black and white, straight forward type of thinking and talking.  And for this reason perhaps, small talk is more difficult for me. 

This morning I read through Romans 3. The theme that jumps out at me is that ALL fall short, NOT ONE person is righteous, ALL are liars. We receive His Righteousness through faith in Christ alone. No work of our hands. Not via good intentions.

Verse 28, For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law. (emphasis mine)

Our justification comes as a gift.

Verse 24, being justified as a GIFT by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus. (emphasis mine)

So if it's a gift, if we can do NOTHING to receive this gift, except accept Jesus and acknowledge He is our Redeemer...why then to we quibble over the HOW of being saved? Why do we have 'recipes' of how to pray and accept? We are as individual from each other as we can get, so to my way of thinking, our acceptance of Christ should be as varied as we are. Oh, please believe me when I say that this DOES not mean I am suggesting the 'all paths lead to God' belief. No...I'm saying that our first prayers to God when we accept Him for who He is, are unique. Only we know what is in our hearts and what needs to be laid at the foot of the cross. Our acceptance doesn't depend on man-made carbon copy prayers, or the 'pray after me' ideology. It depends on our heart.  

We are all fallen creatures, unrighteous, and broken. Until God finds us, speaks to us and lifts us up. We have to be willing. We have to accept that He is who He says He is. (speaking to those who choose to believe) And along the way, we must not lose sight of the fact that we are ALL sinners and we ALL need saving, His love and His understanding. 

So during the refining process, we mustn't bash those around us who are not on the path we're on. First of all, again, we're all unique, so our journey will look different. Second, we all have stumbling blocks and just because mine isn't yours, or yours isn't mine, doesn't mean we're both not still growing, learning, becoming more like Christ. 

I'm so guilty of having a judgmental attitude. I don't know how to separate admonishment from judging. Correction from judging. I'm missing the love of Christ. The compassion He desires us to have towards each other. Maybe it's the black and white nature of my nature. The absoluteness of my brain. And I will acknowledge that those are excuses, especially when I profess to be a believer. 

My edges are not soft and smooth, not yet. I have a long ways to go, before I'm the person He intends me to be. It's going to hurt too...because already I am facing my own words and beliefs down, one by one. I'm holding them to the Word of God. Weighing them. Measuring them up. Only to find that they are not as I thought. I'm missing a few ingredients. But I will find them. God willing. 

Ephesians 2:8-9, For by GRACE you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the GIFT of God; NOT as a result of works, so that NO ONE may boast. (emphasis mine)

This post is linked up over at Women Living Well:

Also Linked Up with Homemaker By Choice:

And Lastly, over at The Alabaster Jar:

The Alabaster Jar


  1. Thank you for your words! I agree--we all have a unique path to trod. It's hard to remember that about others, but we also need to remember it for US. Sometimes we get caught up on being as good as another person that we forget to be as good as the only one person we should try to follow--Christ. Thank you for helping me today! :)

  2. Mynnette,
    Very great point. I know I myself can cloak myself in the 'Grass is Greener' mentality, without seeing the beauty that is my personal walk with Christ.
    You're very welcome, and thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment!



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