January 2

John 1:15-18

“The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” vs. 17

Jesus was born a Jew and grew up thoroughly enmeshed in Judaism’s traditions and laws, but when he began preaching and teaching his interpretation of the prophets revealed the centrality of God’s steadfast love and mercy. The gospel writer John put it clearly, “The law had come through Moses; grace and truth had come through Jesus Christ.” We’ve taken John’s words into our hearts; for many they are the core message of the gospel. It is so good to know that we are loved unconditionally and that our salvation is by grace! But it’s so hard to live by that good news! We get a taste of that with the advent of each new year and the emphasis on resolutions. For days we’ve gotten messages from our cultural Moses telling us that our lives will be so much better if we can get our lives in order. And we’ve gone along with it. Some have already made ambitious resolutions and started on diets and workout programs–others are waiting until after the orgiastic consumption of food and drink required by the bowl games. Now it’s fine to go to gyms, eat healthy, and take care of bodies and relationships. But what we often fail to realize is that those resolutions are like the law and too often they result in failure and guilt. Those who live by grace know that God’s love is not connected to cultural standards of beauty and fitness. It really is unconditional!

Thought for the Day: What resolutions am I making?

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