Have you ever noticed how the two are linked? Paul’s letters to churches – all those letters of encouragement, critique, disappointment, joy, love – all begin with a salutation.
Grace to you, and peace.
We talked about righteousness this week. Active righteousness – civil righteousness, cultural righteousness, ethical righteousness – is our attempt to earn righteousness by obeying the law, whether public law, social standards, or the Ten Commandments.
We suck at it.
Everyone last one of us fails when we are held up against the standard of the law. We’re terrible. We’re so terrible at obeying God’s law that I don’t understand why we still think that we can earn righteousness, that we are ‘good people’, because according to God’s law: I am an outlaw.
His law shows me how much I need Him.
He knows I can’t earn righteousness. He created the law that I could know that I can’t earn righteousness. And because He loves me so much – He offered me righteousness. He offered me freedom from the law. He offered forgiveness. No condemnation. A get-out-of-jail-free card.
This freedom doesn’t come cheap, though. The wages of sin is death, and a price must be paid for forgiveness.
So He paid the price.
For it is by grace that you have been saved.
Righteousness was offered to me, given freely. There is nothing I can do to earn it, to repay it, to make myself worthy. All I have to do – all I can do – is accept.
You don’t have to work so hard; you can rest easy.
There is peace in this knowledge. Peace in knowing that my life has been bought, has been paid for. Peace in knowing that I don’t have to work to earn righteousness. That I can’t lose it.
In His grace, I find peace. Peace that I can rest my soul in, peace that cannot be disturbed by classes and papers and busy schedules and bad days.
[Philemon 1:3; Ephesians 2:8; “Rest Easy”, Andrew Peterson]