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Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Mar 03, 2014 | Comments (0)


Second Sunday in Lent

Unlocking the Gospel Secrets of Spirituality

Discover what difference reading these scriptures while Thinking Legalism or Feeling Grace can make.

The Grace Language of Jesus

SPIRITUALITY CAN CHANGE OUR LIFE

Jesus took words with literal religious belief and gave them a spiritual grace meaning. Literal religious words are beliefs that are conditional, exclusive and for special groups. Spiritual grace words are experiences that are inclusive, unconditional and for all.

Legalism thinks all truth is literal. Grace knows the difference between literal and spiritual truth.

Legalism only goes with those who agree with them. Grace goes everywhere.

Not sure how to apply these? Click here to read the introductory text for the new Bottom Line Meditations

OLD TESTAMENT: Genesis 12:1-4a

Literal Religion: God called Abraham to leave his homeland to go to a country He will show him.

Read this scripture literally for its religious meaning.

Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you.”

Spiritual grace: God calls us to leave our worldly homeland to go to a spiritual country He will show within us.

Now quietly move into God's Presence and read this scripture.

Now the LORD said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you.”

Can you feel the difference?

Forget about those “how to” books, videos and articles. The only sure way to be a legalist is with an eraser!

PSALM: 121

Literal Religion: “Keep” is for Him to be with us physically to protect us from all evil.

Read this scripture literally for its religious meaning.

“Happy are those whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.”

Spiritual grace: “Keep” means to be with us spiritually no matter where we are.

Now quietly move into God's Presence and read this scripture.

“The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.”

Can you feel the difference?

Legalism is like fishing, both mysteriously encourage exaggeration!

EPISTLE: Romans 4:1-5, 13-17

Literal Religion: “Righteousness” means doing what is right to believe in God.

Read this scripture literally for its religious meaning.

“Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.”

Spiritual grace: “Righteousness” means being in a right relationship with God to believe in Him.

Now quietly move into God's Presence and read this scripture.

“Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.”

Can you feel the difference?

The only thing that causes more cheating than golf is legalism!

GOSPEL: John 3:1-17

Literal Religion: To “see” is physical, “born” means physical birth.  “above” means physically up.

Read this scripture literally for its religious meaning.

Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, noone can see the kingdom of God without being born again.”

Spiritual grace: To “see” is spiritual, “born” means where you are coming from, “again” is translated “above” meaning spiritually “in” His Presence.

Now quietly move into God's Presence and read this scripture.

Jesus answered him, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.”

Can you feel the difference?

Like life, legalism is made up by a series of absolute changes which are: Sudden Collapse, Radical Change, Complete Frustration, Slow Improvement, Brief Mastery, and Sudden Collapse.

Share your insights in the comments below

For further study see the follow on Second Sunday in Lent Meditation.


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