From a Christian perspective, looking at the lifestyles of so many people around us today can be painful. Most people are struggling to follow external expectations the world imposes on them, but failing miserably. They have the best of intentions, but simply aren’t making any progress; what holds them back is that they have internalized the Law of Moses without realizing it. This makes it more imperative that we reach out in compassion and offer them the alternative—the Gospel of Grace.
Before we were born again, we lived in mortal fear of sin. This fear had the potential of controlling every aspect of our lives. Now that we’re in Christ, sin is no longer an issue for us. The concept of sin as it was thought of under the law doesn’t apply anymore to believers. “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth” (Romans 10:4).
The law was harsh and unyielding, and it showed no mercy. It was only intended to last for a finite amount of time, until Jesus came to replace it with grace. “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). Jesus replaced the Ten Commandments, and its accompanying six hundred-plus additional laws, with just one law: the law of love.
This knowledge gives us tremendous freedom and peace of mind others don’t have. Religion says to fear God’s wrath when we make a mistake, but that fear disappears when we learn His true nature through our relationship with Jesus. “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love”(1 John 4:18). God wants to show the love, mercy, and compassion He has for us; He’s not angry or intent on punishing us.
It’s now no longer necessary to beat ourselves up for our past mistakes. We don’t have to suffer any more pangs of self-condemnation, guilt, or shame when we don’t measure up to others’ expectations. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:1, 2, NIV). We’ve also been freed from basing our identities on what we do, because we can now base them on what Jesus already did. This gives us the right to be sons and daughters of God, Himself. “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children” (Romans 8:14-16, NIV).
Grace gives us confidence that others don’t have, and frees us from having to struggle with the same issues that defeat others. It makes peace, joy, deliverance, healing, and everything else we need, available to us. Considering the multiple blessings we receive makes us deeply thankful. “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits”(Psalm 103:2). It’s now up to us to offer the world the grace it desperately needs.