What I’m Thinking: Starting with Grace

What’s the starting point for our relationship with God? Grace.

Here’s a transcript:

I’m thinking about the fifth chapter of the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans (Romans 5:1-8).

Romans is quite unusual amongst the letters of Paul that we have. He wrote it to a group of people that he did not know. They were people that he intended to visit, but he hadn’t been to Rome before. He had been to Corinth – in fact he’d founded that church. He knew the churches around Galatia well, and of course Philemon was a friend of his. But he had not been to Rome.

He wanted to visit. He was on his way to Spain and wanted to meet with the church there along the way. So Romans has the character of a letter of introduction.

It’s one of the reasons that it’s quite so long. Paul was being fairly thorough. He had a reputation (I’m sure he knew that) and the reputation was, shall we say, a mixed one. NNot everyone approved of Paul or his theology. That is why I think Paul spent quite so long on this matter of God’s grace and the way that we receive it through faith.

In this section of Romans Paul is focusing on the necessity of faith and of how God’s grace came even though people were very much rejecting that grace in the ways that they knew it was coming to them. Even in the midst of that, wrote Paul, God’s grace came. “While we were yet sinners,” God’s grace came.

I think that is the core of Christianity that Paul was so right to emphasize. We so commonly and so eagerly come up with ways for people to make things right with God. And indeed people should make things right with God, but we should always do that understanding that God is reaching out to us first. God wants to be in a good relationship with us. God loves us, however we might shake that love aside.

So grace shines forth and, knowing it or not, we bask in it as we enjoy the heat of the sun.

Be filled with grace, my friends, for grace abundant is there to fill you.

That’s what I’m thinking. I’m curious to hear what you’re thinking. Leave me your thoughts in the comments section below; I’d love to hear from you.

Categories What I'm Thinking | Tags: , | Posted on June 13, 2023

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