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The Gift of Grace

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:16

I suppose most of us have read about the Passover in the Bible. Maybe you’ve even been to an Easter play and seen a visualization of it. I know I’ve read it many times and have even been involved in productions of Easter plays. But as I was reading John 13 a few weeks ago, I read something that I had never noticed before. Let me add a little context before I explain.

While at the Passover, Jesus washed His disciple's feet. This act of humility is shocking enough when you understand how degrading the task of feet washing was in the Jewish culture. This task was so low that it could only be done by non-Jewish slaves. In this act, Jesus was showing them the importance of humility and service. But this isn’t what I want to focus on. The part that shocked me is that Jesus washed Judas’ feet. Judas - the one who would betray Jesus. Why would Jesus do that? Why would He show such compassion and kindness to His betrayer? We know that soon after, Jesus handed Judas the sop and dismissed him to meet with the Pharisees. Why didn’t Jesus dismiss Judas at the beginning of the supper? Jesus knew what Judas had done. Jesus knew who Judas was...and He loved him anyways.

Can you imagine the thoughts that were running through Judas’ mind as Jesus knelt down and began to wash his feet? He looked down and saw such love and compassion. He looked down and saw grace and mercy. He looked down and saw Jesus. I don’t know why Judas continued on with his betrayal after such an encounter with grace. Perhaps, he felt he had gone too far. Perhaps, he felt he had done too much. Or perhaps, he thought that Jesus already knew who and what he was and there was no way Jesus could ever forgive him.

Is that where you are? You think, “but I’ve gone too far! I’ve done too much! Don’t you see Jesus? Don’t you see who I am?" And He says, “Yes! I see you. Yes, I know you. I still love you!” "But God, I’m broken!" “Give Me your pieces.” "But God, I’m so ashamed!" “Give me your shame!”

Are you struggling with God's gift of grace? “God, I deserve this. I deserve the pain. I deserve the sickness. I deserve the brokenness. I deserve it all! If I can just shake myself...if I can just do better…” That’s the opposite of the gospel! "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9) There is no answer within yourself. Your own goodness, your own discipline is not enough. Nothing you can ever do will be enough.

There is only one who is enough. His name is Jesus. It has always been Jesus. It will always be Jesus. It will never stop being Jesus. The blood of Jesus is strong enough to save you. It is strong enough to sustain you. Jesus is enough.

I beg you! Take another look at Jesus. Yes, He sees you! Not as you see yourself, but as a Merciful Saviour Who would die on a rugged cross to save you! Do you see the compassion in His eyes? Do you hear the mercy in His cry? Do you see the nail-scarred hands? Do you see it? Do you see Jesus? He is the merciful master who is offering you the hope of Heaven.

Friend, not one person who has ever received God’s grace deserved it.

We didn’t earn our salvation. We didn’t inherit our salvation. We were all sinners in need of a loving Saviour. When we accepted His salvation, He forgave us and removed our sins as far as the east is from the west. Not because we deserved it, but because He loved us.

Jesus is calling. Jesus is offering forgiveness. Will you accept that gift of salvation? Will you let Jesus be enough for you?

Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Romans 5:8 “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

Romans 10:9 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

Romans 10:13 “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Romans 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

Romans 8:38-39 “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

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