(From Paul Blackham's Jesus Talks – Trinity 8 – from 18mins to end)
Grace is the hardest thing of all to understand and believe. It makes no sense at all in terms of human logic and instinct. Our first thought really, our first thought is always, “What do I need to do? How can I sort myself out?”
And even in these ultimate questions, we assume that there’s some kind of tradition or creed or technique or religious system or self-improvement programme or new resolutions that will sort us out. We always vastly underestimate the problem and vastly overestimate our abilities.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ is a statement that He alone has the ability to sort out our problem that is so huge. And He has the love and the servant-heart and the humility and the glory to do it. We might ask, “What do I need to do? How can I sort myself out? How can I fix things?”
To which, God replies, “Do you mean what do you need to do in order to pacify the living God whose eyes are too pure to even look on sin? What do you need to do in order to turn back history, to take away the things that you shudder to remember? What do you need to do in order to encompass the whole universe in yourself so that it can be purified by you? What do you need to do to disarm the devil, defeat death, answer the gaping abyss of hell? What do you need to do in order to bring perfect justice, mercy, goodness, and life to a desperate and lost world? What do you need to do to heal all sicknesses and create new resurrection bodies in a perfect new creation? What do you need to do to renew the universe so that it can be the home of the living God forever? What do you need to do to lay a hand on both God and humanity to brings us both together? Well what can you do about all that?... Not much.”
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ is that He was given such a task by His Father and He went out in the Father’s will and the power of the Spirit to accomplish this at enormous, infinite, personal cost. The pure and perfect and obedient Son, Jesus Christ, takes us filthy and double-minded and selfish people as His personal friends and members of His family. He takes up our cause and gives His all to the ultimate degree in order to save us from ourselves. He makes it possible for our past to be forgiven and for us to be made into copies of Himself and it’s possible for us, even us, to be given a warm welcome into the eternal life of God, now and forever.