Grace or Truth?
by Kevin Twombly on October 26, 2021
Grace or Truth?
Grace or truth? Is that really the question we should be asking? Our world is divided, even among church-goers. We can't seem to see eye to eye on any number of issues. Masks or no masks? Vaccines or no vaccines? Dunks or Starbucks? Pumpkin Spice or Hot Chocolate? The weather is either too hot or too cold.
We can't ever seem to agree on where things should stand.
There are those that operate and speak from a truth perspective and then there are those that operate and speak from a grace perspective. While both are doing right in speaking through either truth or grace there is something missing. I began by stating that there is division. Here’s the deal. Often it is those who operate with a truth perspective that feel that those who deal in grace have no backbone. While those who operate with a grace perspective feel that those who only deal in truth have no heart.
On Sunday Josh shared the challenge that Paul was addressing found within the pages of Galatians 2. The Jews were bringing the truth (circumcision) that they knew about being Jewish to the Gentiles in a way that became a burden to the Gentiles. There was no grace in their message and yet that is what Paul was trying to bring to them.
For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:19-20
Now, in this passage we see Paul speaking to the source of our life - Jesus… and that life is available to us solely through grace. You can do nothing to earn salvation. It is a gift freely given to all of us who really are undeserving of it. Grace. How beautiful and amazing a thing! Yet, in proclaiming what Paul does, he doesn’t discount truth.
We operate in an either/or paradigm where Jesus did not. Grace or Truth? We’re asking the wrong question. John 1:14 in our introduction to the Gospel we learn this about Jesus: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
Jesus is identified as being full of grace AND truth. In the upside-down, topsy-turvy world of the believer Jesus brings the argument of grace or truth to a standstill. It’s both and. Grace and Truth. In His perfection Jesus modeled how to live in both realms. Not only did He live this way but He also invites you and I to engage in that way of living.
We can live different!
Grace AND Truth equates to love. Love is how we are meant to live. To love God and others well we must operate in both. We are called to love our brothers and sisters while also loving our enemies. When was the last time you extended love to your enemy? How has grace and truth been evident in your actions toward others?
In what ways can you learn to better live out Grace AND Truth?
While the rest of the world argues either truth or grace we have been offered a different way. May you choose to grow in your understanding and awareness of the way of Jesus. May you engage in supplying to yourself and those around you a healthy dose of grace and truth. Through all of your encounters may people experience the beauty of Christ in you - the hope of glory. And may those encounters leave people with a hunger for a different way of life for themselves - found only through Jesus.