Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Dec 09, 2013 | Comments (0)

Advent IV

Unlocking the Gospel Secrets of Spirituality

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

The Grace Language of Jesus


Jesus spoke a foreign language. He took literal words the legalist understood and gave them a new spiritual meaning.

For legalism, sins are the cause of separation from God. For grace, Sin is separation from God and the cause for all sins.

Matthew 9:11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

Practicing legalism has three kinds of behavior --
Compulsive... Impulsive... and Repulsive!

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

Think literal Legalism: We literally “weary” God with our rational doubts.

Feel the spiritual Grace: We spiritually “weary” God with our closed hearts.

OLD TESTAMENT: Isaiah 7:10-16

Think literal Legalism: Is it too little for you to weary mortals, that you weary my God also?
Feel the spiritual Grace: Is it too little for you to weary mortals, that you spiritually weary my God also?

Legalism hates and remembers. Grace forgives and forgets! 

Think literal Legalism: We become “restored” as long as we continue to be obedient to all the Laws.

Feel the spiritual Grace: We become “restored” by opening our hearts to abide in Him.

PSALM: 80:1-7, 17-19

Think literal Legalism: Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved by legalism.
Feel the spiritual Grace: Restore us, O God; let your face shine spiritually, that we may be saved by your grace.

A little legalism is like a pregnancy, it doesn't take long before it is birthed!

Think literal Legalism: “Obedience of Faith” is to do His will to get into His Presence.

Feel the spiritual Grace: “Obedience of Faith” is to remain in His Presence to do His will.

EPISTLE: Romans 1:1-7

Think literal Legalism: “We have received grace and apostleship to bring about the legalism of obedience of faith.”
Feel the spiritual Grace: “We have received grace and apostleship to bring about the spiritual obedience of faith.”

In legalism happiness is in the circumstances. In Grace happiness is in the heart! 

Think literal Legalism: God is literally with us as a sign of the Spirit.

Feel the spiritual Grace: God is spiritually with us as a fruit of His Spirit.

GOSPEL: Matthew 1:18-25

Think Legalism: God is with us.
Feel Grace: God is spiritually within us.

In legalism, conviction is a belief that holds you. In grace, Conviction is a belief that you hold! 

Share your insights in the comments below

For further study see the follow on Advent IV Meditation.

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