Weekly Sabbath Survey
Mercy and Grace — 7-30-2016
Maybe you have heard the definitions: Mercy means you didn’t get the bad thing you deserve. Grace means you got a good thing you didn’t deserve. The two are similar, sort of mirror images of one another. That little truth nugget is a huge part of our salvation and worthy of rejoicing and celebrating every day of our lives!
Go a step further and hear this: there is no ‘Alternate Plan B’ in God. Some people think those who ‘drop the ball’ in a serious way (we being the judge of what is serious enough), will languish the rest of their lives without serving God as they were destined to do. That way of thinking frustrates both Mercy and Grace. God’s original purpose for each of us never changes. Some of the circumstances may change. But He makes even our worst mistakes (Himself being the judge!) to fit into His original plan. We all have the power to go forward from failure to believe, not in ourselves, but in Him. Our other choice is to keep the Mark of Cain or Scarlet Letter forever. Jesus died for ALL our sins, and cleanses us from them. We must defy the gossips, our own guilt, and anything else that might hold us back from all God has for us.
There are two ways to say “healing” in the Bible. One is “healed” and the other is “made whole.” If a person was cured of something, but left with scars, after effects, or crippled limbs, they were healed. They didn’t die. But if they were made whole, it meant it was like the disease or injury NEVER happened. No scars, no disability. Made like NEW. In the spiritual sense, we must let Jesus make us whole. Forty years of counseling is NOT for Born Again people! We should get well, and then we must go forth and do what our hands find to do. We shouldn’t try to think up what we’re supposed to be doing. Just read the end of the Gospel of Mark and do what it says. The Lord will open doors for us that no man can shut.
Once I was active in a speaking/preaching ministry. I had my church where I preached every Sunday. About twice a month I traveled to speak at churches, conferences, and retreats. I had a great time with that. Due to lifelong motion sickness, flying was hard for me. I didn’t relish going away from my family either. But I went through doors the Lord opened. I met some great people that I believe were blessed and encouraged by what He did through me. But there came a bend in my road, my circumstances changed drastically. I was very hurt and voluntarily “benched” myself from ministry for a while.
By God’s mercy, I was forgiven, so I never stopped sharing the love of the Lord. In time I was strengthened by grace to serve Him fully again with joy. I have my e-mail ministry and my family to see after. My daughter-in-law was marvelously saved a couple of years ago. She is a great wife and mother and a beautiful daughter to me. God brings redemption and salvation at many levels. His original spiritual destiny for all of us, will not be thwarted by the devil or even us! The Lord is more powerful than anything we can ever think or ask or do. All we have to do is answer when He calls. Just say, “Hello” and Jesus will show us what to do.
Many have accepted God’s mercy (a gift to one who deserved the death penalty–the wages of sin is death), but they went no further in understanding. Mercy without grace is a life sentence of “I am forgiven.” Jesus wants more. He wants us Made Whole. We must accept His intense measure of full pardon grace (a gift to one who has not merited the favor). Mercy first, then grace, and, “I am made whole.”
There’s a story of Jesus healing a blind man. Jesus touched his eyes once, but the man’s sight was blurry, so he got a second touch. If you feel like things are not clear to you, your spiritual understanding on this is kind of blurry, Ask the Lord for a second touch of the grace, and Look Up.
Jesus spit on the blind man’s eyes, laid hands on him and asked if he could see anything. The man said, “I see men like trees, walking.” Then, Jesus laid hands on his eyes again, told him to look up, and the man was restored (made whole) and could see every person clearly. Mark 8:23-25
Charlene Reams Manning, Believer in the Lord Jesus Messiah
Copyright May 2016
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