The Gospel Cure Us of Fear, Dissatisfaction and Pride

Gospel change is the Spirit of God using the story of God to make the beauty of God come alive in our hearts.  Having our eyes opened to see our part in the story creates in us a love for God that is strong enough to finally drive out our attraction to other idols.  The gospel cures us of fear, dissatisfaction and pride.

– Greear, J.D.; Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary; B&H Publishing Group; Nashville, TN; Copyright 2011; Kindle Edition; page 64

Both Start with Unbelief in the Gospel

Pride leads to hardness of heart toward God and hatred of others.  Despair leads us to depression, fear, and indulgence in the lusts of the flesh.  This is the cycle he [Satan] loves to have us in.  Both start with unbelief in the gospel.

– Greear, J.D.; Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary; B&H Publishing Group; Nashville, TN; Copyright 2011; Kindle Edition; page 51

Religious Change Does Not Work

Religious change, no matter how well-intentioned, doesn’t work for three primary reasons:

  1. Religious activities fail to address the “root” idolatries that drive our sin.
  2. When our acceptance is based on our performance, we exacerbate two root sins in our heart: pride and fear
  3. The insecurity of always wondering if we’ve done enough to be accepted causes resentment of God, not love for Him.

– Greear, J.D.; Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary; B&H Publishing Group; Nashville, TN; Copyright 2011; Kindle Edition; pages 30-33

We Have No Reason to Be Proud or Ashamed

Yet God has assigned the measure of faith that each one of us will receive, and he calls us to live accordingly.  That means we have no reason to be proud if we have strong faith and no reason to be ashamed if we have weak faith.

– Duguid, Barbara; Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in our Weakness; P&R Publishing; Philipsburg, NJ; copyright 2013; Page 223

Humans Are Toxically Self-reliant and Prideful Creatures

Humans are toxically self-reliant and prideful creatures who tend to believe they can do anything they set their minds to.  In their early days of indulgence most addicts believe that they can stop the behavior whenever they choose.

– Duguid, Barbara; Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in our Weakness; P&R Publishing; Philippsburg, NJ; copyright 2013; Page 70

His Love Meets Resistance from Law-Addled Hearts

The message of God’s one-way love for sinners naturally meets resistance from law-addled hearts.  It produces objections in those who are wired for earning and deserving, which is all of us.  Sometimes these objections are rationalized forms of emotional offense that we looked at in the last chapter.  When our sense of pride is attacked, it defends.  Sometimes these objections are projections of fear about what might happen if people actually believed this message.  Sometimes the objections to grace are simply honest rejoinders to a word that can be very hard to swallow.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 2108