Okay ~ so I’m going to look at the Luther quote in sections, please feel free to jump in with your thoughts!
“If you are a preacher of grace, then preach a true and not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly, for he is victorious over sin, death, and the world.”
“If you are a preacher of grace…..”I am going to assume that he is not only speaking of men of the cloth. Aren’t we all to be preachers of grace?
a person whose occupation or function it is to preach
While it isn’t my occupation I do believe the Lord intends it to be my function to preach/share/teach the gospel. Matthew 28:19-20 “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. “
Luther says to preach a true and not fictitious grace. Fictitious being not real, imaginary or fabricated. There are plenty of those “kinds of graces” taught in society, right? Good works will get you into heaven, prayers for those who have already passed away will get them into heaven, being a suicide bomber will give you great rewards… all fictitious graces. True grace? That Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins and only because of that can we have hope of eternal life. That is true grace.
Next Luther says, that if grace is true, you must bear a true and not a fictitious sin. Now this is a bit trickier. IF we used one of the graces above (good works etc..) then how would our sins be fictitious? Could this be something like beating yourself up for actions or circumstances out of your control? Luther had experience with that. He literally beat himself for his daily sins…..”He practiced self-denial by frequent fasting and sleeping outdoors in the winter without a blanket. He prayed constantly and beat himself with a whip to show God how sincere he was in his desire for holiness and salvation. Luther went to confession as all good monks did, but his confessions were far from ordinary. While the average monk would go over a few basic sins and get it over with, Luther would dredge up everything he could think of from the years past to the present day. He would repeat confessions of sins he had already confessed, thinking perhaps he hadn’t been sincere enough in the previous confession. Sometimes confessing four times a day, his confessions lasted for hours, until his confessors dreaded the approach of their guilt-ridden brother.” ( spirit of grace ministries
IF our grace is true ~ if we are sharing the gospel and how we are utterly incapable of saving ourselves, when others see us fall on our face, will they understand His Grace even more? I can only hope that is the case. That the Holy Spirit uses my foibles to His advantage in the hearts of others. I have said things I wish I could grasp out of the air and shove back into my mouth, I have done things that made me wish I had a time turner like Hermione Granger , that I might replay that time and not take those actions… we all do, right?
As someone believes without a doubt in Jesus Christ, and one who shares that belief with others then we can, ” Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly, for he is victorious over sin, death, and the world.” REJOICE in Christ even more boldly! Stop apologizing for everything and be Christ to others ~ stop explaining away our sins and our religion and just profess His redeeming love and salvation. NO Apologizing, just be His ~ just live in His Grace each day!
Whew ~ what freedom!!
Filed under 31 days, faith