Thinking with grace rather than justice, part 4; John 15:18; Matt 19:17-22.

Class Outline:

Thinking with grace rather than justice, part 4; John 15:18; Matt 19:17-22.


Matt 19:16 And behold, one came to Him and said, "Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?"


He wants to do, but nothing indicates that he understands faith. And once he is challenged he will reveal that grace is completely alien to him. He would rather do than receive. This is the plight of so many of us fallen creatures.


Christ in His genius is going to set him up to face a very real issue; grace!


There is a point here I want to make. In this series we are highlighting the difference between man’s justice systems and grace. The justice systems of man that we are highlighting are his judging, gossiping, slandering, favoritism, works to merit God’s favor, competition and comparing.


This does not infringe on the very legitimate right of a person in authority (parent, boss, pastor, judge, senior officer, police officer, etc.) to evaluate someone under their authority and subsequently reward or discipline accordingly and fairly.


This does not infringe on the very legitimate right of a person to evaluate whether a certain relationship is damaging to their spiritual lives or personal lives and to separate either mentally or physically.


Judging falls under the categories of presumed sin, evil, or good. I may assume that someone has produced divine good, but can I actually differentiate between divine good and human good? Can I determine the sin in a man’s heart? Can I see the motivation within a person? Therefore, can I make a justice system in which I can analyze and categorize people as human good, divine good, bad, sin, evil, or indifferent? I cannot and so I give them grace.


If you tell your child to be home at 10pm and no later and they walk in at 11pm, that is not a judgment call. If someone who has a responsibility in the church to do something and they don’t do it, that’s not a judgment call. If someone is late for work, that’s not a judgment call. How I deal with these situations should be in grace, but grace can mean discipline or separation. The believer priest has the privacy to make those decisions.


Grace doesn’t equate itself with stupidity or naivety. The believer makes sound decisions based on the truth.


Matt 10:16

Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; therefore be shrewd as serpents, and innocent as doves.


1 Cor 2:15

But he who is spiritual appraises [anakrino = scrutinize, investigate, interrogate, determine] all things, yet he himself is appraised by no man.


This means in the context of knowing the deep things of God through God the HS that the spiritual man searches the truth behind all things, however this is no way means that he makes a judgment that is outside of the grace of God. In love he gives the benefit of the doubt when not all the facts are known.


In this series we are bringing out justice systems that result in judging others, working for God’s merit, condemning others, praising others for approbation, evaluating good and evil in a person when you can’t see their mental attitude. These are the systems of arrogance and ignorance and therefore become evil.


1 Cor 4:5

Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men's hearts; and then each man's praise will come to him from God.  


Matt 19:16 And behold, one came to Him and said, "Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?"


Matt 19:17 And He said to him, "Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good; but if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments." 


Matt 19:18 He said to Him, "Which ones?" And Jesus said, "You shall not commit murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; 


Matt 19:19 Honor your father and mother; and You shall love your neighbor as yourself. "


6 of the 10 commandments are mentioned [codex #1]; which ones are missing?


 1 - You shall have no other gods before Me.

2 - You shall not make for yourself an idol,

3 - You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain,

4 - Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.


This man loves his wealth so much that it is probable that his motivation for keeping the commands is so that he doesn’t lose animals to sacrifices.


Christ does not ask him about the commands honoring God because if he did the man would have lied by saying he has kept them all. Christ knows that he kept the last 6 and so only asks him of those. He has violated commands one and two by having his wealth as his god and idol. If given the chance to say he has kept all ten would have been a violation of commandment three, taking the Lord your God’s name in vain.


The fact that the man asks, “which ones,” indicates that he’s not so sure about keeping them all, so his hope is that there is a part of the Law, which if kept, will attain eternal life. The Law was never designed for that. The Law was designed to do exactly what the Lord is going to do with it here, reveal the inadequacy and helplessness of man to alone bear the justice of God.


When the Lord questions - “Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good;” He is showing that He is the only one capable of making the decisions of good and bad, good or evil, right or wrong since as God He is perfect justice and righteousness. However, the young rich man addresses Him as “teacher” and not Lord. This brings up another point concerning the kosmos.


The kosmos acknowledges Jesus as a great teacher but not as God incarnate who possesses all authority. When the believer proclaims this truth he is hated.


Remember, they don’t reject you, they reject Him, so don’t get argumentative or flustered or have MAS’s, maintain your grace and be gentle.


2 Tim 2:24-25

And the Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition,


1 Peter 3:15

but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;


That’s grace and not justice.


Kosmic man would rather be under such a system than to accept the grace policy of God; just like this rich man.


Matt 19:20 The young man said to Him, "All these things I have kept; what am I still lacking?"


Matt 19:21 Jesus said to him, "If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me."


If you wish to be fulfilled or complete or whole as opposed to lacking, get a glimpse of grace. Nothing said here about eternal life, but Christ is asking him to get a glimpse of grace in his own soul. “Get rid of all your wealth so that you might see a glimpse of what I’m about to give up for you.” This has nothing to do with money. Christ is saying that what this young rich man lacks is any understanding of grace. He balks at the idea even though there is a promise of reward in heaven.


Matt 19:22 But when the young man heard this statement, he went away grieved; for he was one who owned much property.


Another glaring and obvious testimony about the depravity of man is here also. His earthly assets were more important to him and eternal life with God. He would rather his current earthly assets than waiting for treasure in heaven. Obviously he doesn’t believe Christ, and no wonder, he doesn’t see Jesus as the Christ, only as a didaskalos, a teacher.


This is a snapshot of what will happen at the Great White Throne Judgment.


REV 20:11 And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them [omnipresence - LOF is the only place].


REV 20:12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened [books of justice systems]; and another book was opened, which is the book of life [book of grace]; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds [what good thing shall I do …].


This is the last evaluation of man’s justice systems.


The book of life is a book of grace. It contains the names of those who have obtained life through faith, by grace lest any man should boast. It also contains the new names of the winner believers who became overcomers by means of Christ, through grace.


REV 3:5 'He who overcomes shall thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name [title] from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angels.


This is the depravity of man and why in him, in all of us, we choose for justice systems when under the control of our sin natures.


The idea of grace leaves a bitter taste in the mouth of the kosmic person and so they hate Christ, grace’s author, and they hate the positive believer, grace’s follower.


Christ is grace’s author and Prince Ruler through the cross, ROM 5:15.


ROM 5:15 But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.


The believer is grace’s follower who reigns in life through that same grace and never by justice, ROM 5:17.


ROM 5:17 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.