Have you felt it? Have you had someone, or even a whole church, never let you live past your lowest point? Have you had the load of condemnation strapped to you back and cinched too tight to ever be loosened? Have you, a child of God, a recipient of grace, had grace stripped out of your hands every time you would dare drink in its soul-quenching properties? Then you have faced them–Grace Killers!
Grace Killers lurk everywhere the children of God exist. Perhaps they repackage themselves for whichever group or denomination they are in, but they are the same. Being an Independent Baptist, I, of course, have seen them most in action there. So I encourage each of us to learn to spot grace killers and not let them do their dastardly work.
To some we are where we _____. Always. Our brothers and sisters in Christ now define us by what we once did rather than by what Christ has done. We all have low points in our Christian life. Maybe someone for a short time fell off the wagon into drunkedness. Perhaps someone had marriage difficulties or even a divorce. Maybe they got in trouble with the law. There are so many possibilities, sadly, in this corrupt world. The problem is that when we arrive on the positive side of repentance, when we experience the warmth of the grace of His forgiveness, and when we feel the joys of restored fellowship, we have some who act as if grace never came. Well, it did come, so we must label these accusers as Grace Killers!
The question is whether grace is as spectacular and far reaching as the Bible presents it to be. For the record, it is. To some, however, we will always be that person who messed up, or that divorced person, or that guy who got in trouble. They will recommend we have no opportunities. They will whisper as if we are still in the backslidden state. They would condemn us to stay in the dark place, encourage others to keep us there as well, but what is forgotten? Grace.
But grace is part of the fabric of the Christian life. No grace, no Christianity. To weigh others down and be a Grace Killer is to deny the very system whereby we were delivered.
Grace Killers do a gruesome work. Have you ever noticed the abysmal record we have of retaining people after a church discipline process? Particularly, those who respond with repentence? They almost never stay around. Why? They can never escape the dark shadow. The oppressive weight of condemnation never lifts. It was all fine with Christ. He gave us Galatians 6:1, remember? No, the problem is Grace Killers! They never let it go.
I do not deny that sin has consequences–that is the nature of sin. But we do not ever have to always live under the guilt–that is the nature of grace!
We can’t help what others say and do, but we can champion grace. Demand the rights and privileges of all God’s children as those rights and privileges were purchased by the Blood of Christ. No Grace Killers can actually even give a little wound. They can’t take it away–it is our eternal possession. Ignore them then. But remember too those around you in the clutches of these Grace Killers. Lift up those who are constantly weighted down by those who deal in condemnation.
Grace Killers live in a house of cards. When you realize they have no power, not even a spiritual BB gun or spitball, the cards come tumbling down. Treasure grace and never let anyone obscure it for you or someone around you.
Find all articles in the series here.