Saturday, March 24, 2007

Legalism or Grace

I've mentioned previously that one of my regular devotional resources is Max Lucado's Grace for the Moment, which is a collection of 365 excerpts from his books in the form of a daily devotional guide. I was getting caught up this week after having been gone, and was particularly struck by the comment on March 20...
All the world religions can be placed in one of two camps: legalism or grace. Humankind does it or God does it. Salvation is a wage based on deeds done or salvation is a gift based on Christ's death.

A legalist believes the supreme force behind salvation is you. If you look right, speak right, and belong to the right segment of the right group, you will be saved. The brunt of the responsibility doesn't lie within God; it lies within you.

The result? The outside sparkles. The talk is good and the step is true. But look closely. Listen carefully. Something is missing. What is it? Joy. What's there? Fear. (That you won't do enough) Arrogance. (That you have done enough) Failure. (That you have made a mistake)...

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