Frustrated Grace

Galatians 2:21 reads: “I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Frustrating grace is defined as ‘annulling’ in the Montgomery Modern English Translation. The Weymouth Translation renders that clause, “I do not nullify the grace”. Let’s look at the translation submitted by Arthur S. Way for further clarity: 

Gal 2:21 I do not treat God’s gracious gift as a thing of no significance – as I should do if I followed your example – for, if righteousness can be obtained through observance of the Mosaic Law, Messiah’s death was simply superfluous. 

Paul sternly scolded Peter, warning him that his exclusive attitude and subsequent behavior frustrated the grace of God. Peter stopped eating with the Gentiles because certain Jewish emissaries arrived. Out of fear, Peter proceeded to draw back from the Gentiles (Gal 2:12 Way). Paul wanted Peter to see that he was reverting back to the law and, in thought and deed, frustrating God’s grace. Our attitudes and ultimately the resulting actions from them, render the grace of God moot. The power of God can withstand and totally surpass any circumstance, any evil or any power, but it will not subvert our traditions. That job belongs to us. “Our traditions make the word of God of none effect …” (Mark 7:13). 

In Christ, we inherited the gift of grace but deployment of its power requires knowledge and a sensitivity to ingrained traditions. Make Bible Study on Wednesday your priority. Together we can identify and uproot tradition and cultivate an increased knowledge of God. That is how we secure and multiply the grace that is ours (2 Peter 1:2-3)! On Wednesday at 7pm, please call in to 218.486.3691 and enter the access code 570919# for your place in grace! 

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