Monday, December 25, 2006

Doctrine and Conduct (20)

The way of grace.

We have looked at six triadic sayings in the sermon on the mount, following the pattern "you have heard that it was said ... but I say unto you ... so therefore ...". These sayings point to the traditional approach to righteousness, the causes of failure, and the way of grace.

This pattern reveals that Jesus was not instituting a new law or a string of new commandments which are idealistic and almost impossible to obey, but rather He is building on the theme of God's deliverance which He announced in the Beatitudes. The way of the Kingdom is the way of grace, and Jesus is calling everyone to participate in God's graciousness. The sermon has real, grace-based, practical guidance for living the Christian life. The way of grace empowers and enables people - it transforms lives and relationships, freeing us from the vicious cycles which lead to failure.

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