The perfect piece of toast is evenly cooked on both sides, just lightly browned so that when you spread the butter over the crispy outside layer it almost falls away from the thicker, softer edges.
Reference: v.21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing! (NIV Bible)
Explore: One of the simple pleasures in my life is hot toast with butter and honey. Yummy! But because I love it so much I'm rather particular about how I like my bread cooked. The perfect piece of toast is evenly cooked on both sides, just lightly browned so that when you spread the butter over the crispy outside layer it almost falls away from the thicker, softer edges. (Okay, so maybe I have spent a little too long eating toast!) I recently had a toaster that cooked the bread, but not perfectly. The left side element was clearly stronger than the right side and so the bread was never toasted evenly. I was even tempted, after numerous burnt toast occasions, to throw my toaster out and buy a new one. However, it wasn't really broken, it just didn't live up to my toasting expectations. And so I couldn't bring myself to throw it out. I then went to visit a friend of mine and for breakfast she made me the perfect piece of toast. It was evenly toasted on both sides, the crispy inside crunched away from the softer outer crust and the butter melted perfectly. It was carbohydrate heaven! I then realised that my toaster was just not up to scratch. It may not have been broken but it was not good enough for me. And so when I got home I decided to throw it out. There was no mourning ceremony, no fond farewell, just a trip to the garbage bin and then a little murmur of excitement as I went on the hunt for my new perfect toaster.
Application: Before Jesus walked this earth the Jews had many laws to follow. These laws, as we learn from the first five books in the Bible, were there to help God's people to follow in His ways. The laws weren't perfect and the Jews didn't always obey them, but they helped the believers to stay focused on God. The law was a little like my first toaster. It wasn't perfect by any means but it still gave me toast! When Jesus came to earth He showed us a grace that was far beyond any law. It is through this grace, that Jesus offers each one of us, that we can truly connect with God. It's not that the law was totally broken, it was just that there was a greater way to have a relationship with God, and that was through Jesus. Like the perfect toaster He gives us all we need – a relationship with God. While the law was helpful when we needed it, our relationship with Jesus is by far more important. If the law was the best way for us to connect with God then Jesus would not have needed to come to this earth to show us how to live and to die for our freedom. But the law was not perfect and so our Messiah came. Now we truly have life. The old way is put aside and we can live in the freedom that Jesus gives to us.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, You are all we need. We often try to impress You and others by what we can and can't do, but Your grace is sufficient for all. Amen.
When hav […]
Buy Linda's new book at Amazon.com
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.