Sunday, March 25, 2012

Grace and Truth

Scripture tells us Jesus' life was balanced with grace and truth (John 1:14). He was full of them both. He provided the perfect example of what humanity should look and act like. We classify people today as "truth people" or "grace people". But we should be truth and grace people.

As God, He was the Word (or Truth) made flesh. As man, he showed us how to depend on the Holy Spirit to live out the truth. He displayed truth wrapped in grace. He never separated the two and was full of them both at all times. Is this true about your life?

Truth and grace balance each other out. They are married. Grace doesn't overlook truth but exercises it with love and compassion. Truth keeps morality high but apart from grace can be harsh and cruel. We cannot divorce the two.

Grace places value on others and not just on being right. It forgives, desires unity, and loves. Truth alone demands perfection and productivity. It just wants results and not relationships wrapped in righteousness. Grace alone overlooks standards and settles for good enough. Truth alone demands to be right and values rules over relationships which leads to rebellion. Without one another, neither is complete and become half-defined. They work together, not against one another. Grace is the salve that soothes truth. It is the aroma that enhances truth. Truth gives grace its substance.

Brutal honesty is wrong. Honesty is good but brutality isn't. "The truth hurts" is always void of grace. Truth sets free. Truth heals. Truth apart from grace is a harsh taskmaster with no loyal servants. Ephesians 4:15 tells us to speak the truth in love, not to withhold the truth in love. Grace alone is spineless and cheap. Grace comes from Christ's death. It is what saves. It cost Christ everything thus is valuable and precious. He is also the truth that leads to the Father. Truth is the backbone that holds grace together and allows it to move. The truth isn’t something we should protect people from. It’s something God gives for their protection. That's giving them true grace.

Someone who wants others to get truth but no grace will unload on them. They will speak their mind and heart no matter the consequences. Problem is their heart and mind don't look like Jesus. Someone who continually overlooks sin without confrontation isn't reflecting Christ's nature either.

We need both grace and truth. They are inseparable. Separating them voids them from being accurate. Since Christ is full of both, we dare not choose truth over grace, or grace over truth.

Who are you withholding truth from? What about grace? To be like Jesus and Jesus to them you must give them both equally. Alone they are unloving and inaccurately represent Jesus. He was full of them both. Are you?

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