Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Mercy & Grace

Titus 3:3-8


Dr. Ron Jacob

Long Island MTC, NY
This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

I love being a Sunday School Teacher! Of all the ministries I am part of in the Mar Thoma Church, this is my favorite. As a Sunday School teacher, I make it a point each year to hammer the concepts of mercy and grace into the minds of my students. My reasoning is simple; because I too often forget that I am always in need of mercy and grace. The simple definitions are as follows: Mercy is when we do not get what we truly deserve and grace is when we get what we do not deserve.

In the passage it says despite the fact that we were “foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, despicable, hating one another”, we were shown goodness and loving kindness which ultimately saved us.

We as Christians are often told that we have a kind and loving God who is always with us. We are reminded that the Holy Spirit resides in us since our body is His temple. In Theodosius Thirumeni’s sermon points for the week he says, “Sacrament of Baptism incorporates us into the body of Christ. We are not alone.”

We are not alone because we have a God who showed us mercy and grace to save us. This relationship is restored and it has nothing to do with our righteous acts. We have a hope which is provided to us, a “hope of eternal life” (v.7). Us being saved by grace and mercy, not works ensures that we can never lay claim that salvation was something earned or deserved.  Without mercy and grace, there is no renewal and there is no rebirth.

Every time I prepare a devotion or share the Word of God, I am reminded of 1 Timothy 1:15-16, “The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the foremost. But for that very reason I received mercy, so that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display the utmost patience, making me an example to those who would come to believe in him for eternal life.”

Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank you for not giving us what we deserve and giving us what we do not deserve. AMEN. 


Thought for the day: Only when we accept that we are the worst of sinners, can we accept the glorious gift of salvation provided by His mercy and grace.