I try to stay calm about inane Christian statements, I really do. But I just can’t help it.
The other day I received an email from a Christian organization trying to encourage me to minister to hurting people. I have no problem with such appeals, nor with helping hurting people.
They talked about God’s grace and how God shows compassion on people and never fails. All of that is fine.
And then they said this:
Can we be the ambassadors of God’s favor and say “I believe in you,” no matter what?
Seriously, I try to stay calm.
The organization that sent this email prides itself on their biblical integrity. They even take it upon themselves to teach others what the Bible says.
Yet if you read that statement, they are saying that God shows you grace because He believes in you.
Oh man. I try so hard.
God does not believe in you. He does not show you grace because He thinks you’re super-duper and just need a little self-esteem boost.
God shows you grace because without Him you can do nothing. Because without new birth you are under God’s wrath and a slave to sin. God, through the Gospel, puts you to death and raises you up to new life in Christ.
At no point in the Bible does God say He believes in us. Many points of the Bible say we are to believe in Him. That’s where the belief thing comes in.
We believe in Him to save us because we can’t save ourselves, nor does He expect us to save ourselves, because we can’t. Which is why He doesn’t believe in you. Which is why He sent His Son to die for you and provided everything necessary for salvation.
He does not show you grace for moral failures because He believes in you. That’s like the complete opposite of why God gives you grace. God gives you grace because without it you aint got a chance.
God gives grace to the humble, to people who have given up on themselves, in other words, people who have the same opinion about themselves that God has–without Him I can do nothing.
God gives grace to people who don’t believe in themselves, but rather believe in Him! If we’re not supposed to believe in ourselves, I’m quite sure God doesn’t either!
He gives you grace because without it you are worthless, hopeless, and useless. He puts that worthless person to death and raises you to new life in Christ as a person who is now worthy of eternal life.
But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.