Two for Tuesday – the Gospel and our Obedience

I Press on, because… – Ray Ortlund

Ray Ortlund highlights two glorious themes of the new testament, (1) the grace of Christ, and (2) how we respond to the magnitude of all that Christ brings us. But sometimes we can fall into an either/or rather than a both/and type of Christianity. Ortlund says,

“New Testament Christianity does not call us to choose between either divine grace or human engagement.  New Testament Christianity calls us to embrace both, and in this order: first overflowing divine grace, then our own vigorous engagement motivated by that grace.  If we reverse the order, we turn the gospel into legalism: “I am pressing on, so that Christ Jesus will make me his own.”  But another way to get it wrong is to leave out the second part – “I am pressing on.”  If all we talk about is overflowing divine grace, we risk distorting the biblical message and influencing people toward a diminished Christianity that will inevitably fail them.”

Very helpful article bringing the grace of Christ and our response together in beautiful harmony.

Failure is not a Virture – Jen Wilkin

Wilkin responds to a growing theology which, she says,

“regards the Law of the Bible as a crushing burden, not just for the unbeliever, but for the believer as well. Enough with “checkbox Christianity,” these voices tell us. No more “how to’s” on righteousness. In the righteousness department you are an epic fail, so toss out your checklists and your laws, and cast yourself on grace.”

Not so fast, Wilkin says. Grace is amazing, to be sure. But part of the amazing grace of God is that it transforms our hearts and empowers us to obey: “Sanctification is about more than ‘You will fail, but there is grace for you.'” Wilkin explores the obedience of the heart that the gospel produces in this blog.