What amazes me more than the ease with which they ask for forgiveness is the fullness with which they accept it. I have learned more about grace from observing my three year-olds than any other place. Why? Because sometimes observing an active moment of grace is more impactful than all the teachings in its aftermath.
Now let’s shift focus to this week’s message from Paul’s courtroom appearance in Acts 24:1-27. He is falsely accused by High Priest Ananias and Roman lawyer Tertullus along with a throng of Jews in support of them. Paul defends himself against the accusations and proceeds to make this astounding statement (Acts 24:15-16): “And I have the same hope in God as these men themselves have, that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.” What?! Remember Paul, who had been called Saul? He had been a murderer and a torturer of Christians. How ever could he have had a clear conscious? His words are a gift to us… They allow us to actively observe the same grace by which my three year-olds play. It is total, complete and absolutely redemptive. There are no “buts,” “ifs”, or “try harders” to God’s forgiveness. His grace has covered and forgotten your past and mine. Do we live in that freedom? What would it look like to believe — really believe — we are forgiven?
Jesus you know what I have done. You forgave me. Thanks you for your grace. I need you as my Savior.