The Proof Is In The Pudding!
Have you ever hear someone say… “I thought he was religious, how does he do the things he does and still talks about GOD?”; or of my Christian friends “I thought he was a Christian?” I know I have thought it from time to time as a person has done me wrong. When I go down that road, who am I really blaming, who am I shaking my figure at, the person who sinned against me or am I blaming YAH like Adam did; am I blaming them both?… “It was the woman YOU gave me” “why did YOU let THEM do that to me?”
The very act of the “religious” one who sinned against me has caused reproach against YAH by their actions and I in my thoughts also bring reproach against YAH by me questioning “why”.
All sin, IS against YAH and Him foremost; yes it affects me but it is His commandments, His judgment, His statutes and judgments we have broken.
Our sins brings reproach against YAH. When we willingly sin, in essence we are telling YAH, “What you said is not so, I can do it if I want” We are at that point becoming the devils advocate… “Did YAH really say that?” as we question His authority in our lives or the truth of His eternal word.
“How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”
Do I put into question the authority of YAH in my life to where other people question HIM? I love Joseph answer to Potiphar’s wife when she asks him to lie with her…“How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” The main concern Joseph has is not about Potiphar but rather about him sinning against YAH; “How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”
The foremost thing that should always be in our mind or like frontlets between our eyes; the thing that should come to mind every time we come to that fork in the road; before we choose to do good or evil; to sin or to run in the opposite direction should be those words of Joseph… “How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”
Grace is not a replacement for obedience to the word of YAH but rather the cure for the times we unknowingly transgress His word; grace and obedience go hand in hand. You can’t throw out the word of YAH and say “I live by grace and grace alone”.
The animal sacrifices of the temple days was all about grace that covered unintentional sins. Intentional sin was dealt with, in some cases buy stoning or being cast out of the camp.
Loving YAH with your WHOLE heart is synonymous with hiding His word in your heart and having them written upon your heart.
“You shall love יהוה your Elohim with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. “You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. “You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. “You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
YAH’S word need to always be behind what we do, what we say and always on our minds and heart.
“But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says יהוה : I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. “No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know יהוה ,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says יהוה . For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
Look at the progression… YAH first puts His law in our minds. He gives us knowledge of His law first, it’s not as if we don’t know what His law is or what YAH expects of us.
Let me digress… The “law” is a poor translation. It should have read “direction, instruction or teachings”. It refers to an archer or a shooter aiming at a “mark”. We are called to be “holy and perfect” as He is Holy and Perfect, hence He has given us the standard or the target of that holiness and perfection we are to aim for. Just in passing…. No archer ever picked up a bow and arrow and immediately started shooting bulls eyes. It take dedication and practice. Our practice comes every time we come to that fork in the road, that situation, which way will we go, how we will respond.
Now back to where I was. Now that we have the understanding of His direction, instruction and teachings, He then writes it on our hearts. They will be what motivates us, what drives us, what guides us from that point on; doing His will become instinctive to us, out of love for Him. He then goes on to say that we will not need someone to teach us His ways… why… because it is constantly on our minds and in our hearts, it becomes our driving force, our life’s blood. Once our heart and mind become totally devoted to Him, He says that at that point we “know Him”. The starting point is when we accept His direction, instruction or teachings in our minds and in our hearts. It’s when we enter into this type of relationship with YAH that when the temptation come we too will say like Joseph; “How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”
People talk about being “born again”… this is what born again looks like; a total surrender, a desire to please YAH, but we have to take the second step… He took the first step when He started to tug on our heart; it is at this point that we become His people and HE becomes our GOD!
Lastly His grace kicks in and HE choose to forget our iniquity and remember them NO MORE! I can hold my hand out to you with a million dollars but if you don’t reach out to my hand to take it, it avails you nothing.
Grace can be likened to your bank overdraft protection. It’s there if you make an error in your checking account but it does not give you the right to write check after check when you have no money.
Grace is there when you fall short of the mark; it’s not there so you can sin again and again and think you sins are all covered and forgiven.
Grace covers the times you didn’t stop to help that person in need; when we don’t share what you have with someone less fortunate or go the extra mile for someone. All of these are missed opportunity to share YAH’S love with some who may not have Him in their hearts.
Grace does not do away with the direction, instruction or teachings (Torah or The Law) of YAH it covers us when we unintentionally fall short of our high calling, namely to be His obedient children; when I fail to remember that I am here to serve my creator and not the other way around.
The proof in the pudding is not the words we speak alone but the actions that accompany those word.