Last Sunday I taught from Matthew 3. Two key sets of verses in this teaching:
- Matthew 3:13-15 Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. 14 But John didn’t want to baptize him. “I am the one who needs to be baptized by you,” he said, “so why are you coming to me?” 15 But Jesus said, “It must be done, because we must do everything that is right.
- Matthew 3:16-17 After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, and I am fully pleased with him.”
The bottom line of the teaching was this…
Jesus did everything God wants, and I get credit for it when I trust Him.
This idea comes from such Scriptures as these:
- Philippians 3:8-9 NIV I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ– the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.
- Romans 5:18-19 NLT Yes, Adam’s one sin brought condemnation upon everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness makes all people right in God’s sight and gives them life. 19 Because one person disobeyed God, many people became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many people will be made right in God’s sight.
This is crazy! Jesus did everything God wants and I get credit for it when I trust Him? What’s that leave for me to do?
St. Paul answers that question in Romans 6.
Grace is amazing, and when you consider it from afar it might seem easily abused, but when you experience it up close and personal you cannot imagine abusing it but only embracing the gift with thankfulness and living with loyalty to the One who extended the gift to you.