April 21, 2012 by Chris French
I’ve been reading thru Andy Stanley’s The Grace of God. It’s fantastic. You should pick it up. He said something today that struck me. “The law of God is actually an expression of the grace of God.” Most of the time we think about laws as keeping us from doing something. The speed limit is 55 so I can’t go 70. The iPad costs $500 so I can’t buy it for $3. That’s the way we look at rules most of the time, but God’s rules are set up not to keep us from having good things, but to keep us safe.
Back in the Garden of Eden there was only one rule: “Don’t eat from that tree.” The world was a VERY safe place so there didn’t need to be several rules to insure Adam & Eve’s safety. Satan’s ploy was not to make them disobey God, but to get them to stop trusting God. If he could do that disobedience would follow pretty quickly. He whispered in their ear that God must be keeping something good from them in the form of that fruit on the forbidden tree. They fell for it and stopped trusting God. I can laugh at their stupidity or I can look at my own life and know that I do the same thing even though God has promised me that He wants only the best things for me.
Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in Heaven give good things to those who ask him!" - Matthew 7.9-11
God wants to give me the good things! He didn’t make all these laws to keep good things from me. His plan was to give me the best things all along! He made all these laws to keep me safe. Satan wants me to be punished like he will be, but God’s laws are put in place to keep me from that. When I look at God’s law from His perspective it is pure grace. I don’t deserve to be kept safe. My sin means that I deserve punishment, not safety from God. His laws actually protect me from my own fate! Pure grace indeed!