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Tuesday, Oct 21, 2014

We Don't Find Grace, Grace Finds Us

  • Tullian Tchividjian, pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
July 13, 2013|1:36 pm

I'm not sure I'll ever fully understand why some Christians get mad when we say that the ultimate hero in the Bible is not Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Paul, etc….but Jesus. There seems to be an unhealthy attraction to find someone in the Bible other than Jesus who is ultimately worthy of our attention and emulation–someone to look up to, copy, respect. There is a strange impulse in many to protect Bible characters and to use them as inspiration…as if sanctification happens as a result of emulation.

Since Genesis 3 we have been addicted to setting our sights on something, someone, smaller than Jesus. Why? It's not that there aren't things about certain people in the Bible that aren't admirable. Of course there are. We quickly forget, however, that whatever we see in them that is commendable is a reflection of the gift of righteousness they've received from God–it is nothing about them in and of itself.

This impulse to protect Bible characters and make them the "end" of the story happens almost universally with the story of Noah.

Noah is often presented to us as the first character in the Bible really worthy of emulation.

Adam? Sinner.

Eve? Sinner.

Cain? Big sinner!

But Noah? Finally, someone we can set our sights on, someone we can shape our lives after, right?

This is why so many Sunday School lessons handle the story of Noah like this: "Remember, you can believe what God says! Just like Noah! You too can stand up to unrighteousness and wickedness in our world like Noah did. Don't be like the bad people who mocked Noah. Be like Noah."

I understand why many would read this account in this way. After all, doesn't the Bible say that Noah "was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God" (Genesis 6:9)? Pretty incontrovertible, right?

Not so fast.

Read the rest here.

William Graham Tullian Tchividjian (pronounced cha-vi-jin) is the Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. A Florida native, Tullian is also the grandson of Billy and Ruth Graham, a visiting professor of theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, and a contributing editor to Leadership Journal.

A graduate of Columbia International University (philosophy) and Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando (M.Div.), Tullian has authored a number of books including Jesus + Nothing = Everything (Crossway). He travels extensively, speaking at conferences throughout the U.S., and his sermons are broadcast daily on the radio program LIBERATE. As a respected pastor, author, and speaker, Tullian is singularly and passionately devoted to seeing people set free by the radical, amazing power of God's grace.

When he is not reading, studying, preaching, or writing, Tullian enjoys being with people and relaxing with his wife, Kim, and their three children: Gabe, Nate, and Genna. He loves the beach, loves to exercise, and when he has time, he loves to surf.
Source URL : http://www.christianpost.com/news/we-dont-find-grace-grace-finds-us-100035/