Working in the Time of Grace

Working in a Time of Grace

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‘These men who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’ 

Matt. 20:12, NIV

 

Matthew 20 often irritates us.  People are working the entire day, and along comes people who have only worked for one hour.  This discrepancy drives the believer nuts.  How in the world could such a thing take place?  It is foolishness to us who insist on a grace of appropriateness.  We want grace to be fair, recognizing the person who has worked very hard.

The problem is that God is outrageous with His grace and love.  He completely expands us to a point where we must embrace a grace that is completely beyond us.  We have to break down and accept what is available to us.  Grace completely dumps us upside down.  We can only proceed if we accept His definition of Grace.

Those who have labored the least are made equal to those who work the hardest.  This seems incredibly unfair and we revolt against such extravagance.  It strikes us as outrageously unfair.  How can those who worked only an hour receive the exact same amount as those who have labored a full eight?

The miracle of  this shockingly outrageous grace is that we are confronted by a profound freedom.  We basically get brought to the point where we get stripped of these illusions and need to walk out the scripture.  It has the tendency to eliminate the issues that could block us and bring us to a most receptive position.

13 “But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? 14 Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. 15 Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ 16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

Matthew 20:13-16

We must admit that God’s grace reaches out to everyone. 

That He has the deep, deep desire to see that each of us connect with His love.  This is indeed the radicalness of the gospel.  It is outrageous and astonishing.  That He would love us who have hated Him.  Our sense of equity is completely undone.  His grace completely turns us upside down. I think that is a good thing.

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About Pastor Bryan Lowe

A repentant rascal with definite issues, but who is seeking to be authentic in his faith to Jesus Christ. An avid reader and a hopeful writer. Husband and father. A pastor and Bible teacher. A brain tumor survivor. Diagnosed with clinical depression, epilepsy, and now disabled. Enjoys life, such as it is, in Alaska.
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One Response to Working in the Time of Grace

  1. Great article. Point well received. The message of God’s grace is indeed Good News.

    Unfortunately, the parable cited in this article often gives people the mistaken notion that they can put-off giving their life to Christ at some point in the future.

    With the point of this parable in mind, they think they can have their fun now and in their 11th hour, they can then surrender their life to Christ. There are two problems with that notion;

    (1) No one knows when their 11th hour will strike, and
    (2) No one knows when Christ will return.

    So if either of those events come to pass before one has given their life over to God in Christ, they are lost to salvation. Their debt to God will still be outstanding and unforgiven.

    Just thought I would bring that forward to those who might be thinking along those lines.

    Grace and peace,
    kdr

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