He Said….What Are We Saying?

It might not be too much of an overstatement to say that if Jesus came to proclaim good news to the poor and release to the captives, to restore sight to the blind and give freedom to the oppressed, then Christianity has come to stand for – and in practice promulgate – the exact opposite of what its founder intended (Luke 4:18-19).

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 83

Don’t Focus on the Fruit

So if you want to see spiritual fruit in your life, don’t focus primarily on the fruit.  Focus on Jesus’ acceptance of you, given to you as a gift.  Focusing on spiritual fruit will usually produce only frustration and despair, not fruitfulness… Focus on Jesus’ acceptance of you, given to you as a gift

– Greear, J.D.; Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary; B&H Publishing Group; Nashville, TN; Copyright 2011; Kindle Edition; page 12

We Merely Give Lip Service to the Apostle Paul’s Attitude in I Corinthians 15:10

My observation of Christendom is that most of us tend to base our relationship with God on our performance instead of His grace.  If we’ve performed well – whatever “well” is in our opinion – then we expect God to bless us.  If we haven’t done so well, our expectations are reduced accordingly.  In this sense, we live by works, rather than by grace.  We are saved by grace, but we are living by the “sweat” of our own performance.

Moreover, we are always challenging ourselves and one another to “try harder.”  We seem to believe success in the Christian life (however we define success) is basically up to us; our commitment, our discipline, and out zeal, with some help from God along the way.  We give lip service to the attitude of the Apostle Paul, “But by the grace of God I am what I am” (I Corinthians 15:10), but our unspoken motto is, “God helps those who help themselves.”

– Jerry Bridges

as quoted by Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 83

Believe It or Not, Christianity is Not About Good People Getting Better…

Believe it or not, Christianity is not about good people getting better.  If anything, it is good news for bad people coping with their failure to be good.  The heart of the Christian faith is Good news, not good advice, good technique, or good behavior.  Too many people have walked away from the church, not because they’re walking away from Jesus, but because the church has walked away from Jesus.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 56

It is Not Our Sacrifice(s) That Secured Our Eternal Future!

The unintended consequence of this push, however, is that if we’re not careful, we can give people the impression that Christianity is first and foremost about the sacrifice we make for Jesus rather than the sacrifice Jesus made for us; our performance for him rather than his performance for us; our obedience for him rather than his obedience for us.  The hub of Christianity is not “do something for Jesus.”  The hub of Christianity is “Jesus has done everything for you.”

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 55-56

It Always Comes at a Cost

When we worship at the altar of performance – and make no mistake, performance-ism is a form of worship – we spend our lives frantically propping up our image or reputations, trying to do it all – and at a cost to ourselves and those we love.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location gf