Some Christians are big on grace and love and forgiveness. You can’t have too much of this. This is the right response in every situation. And, there is also a group of non-Christians who believe that this is exactly what Christians should be about.
There are also Christians who are big on truth. They believe that there are right’s, and there are wrong’s, and that you should be able to tell the difference. And they are more than willing to help. And, there is a group of non-Christians who fully expect Christians to be exactly like this.
So would it surprise certain Christians, and certain non-Christians, that Jesus is full of both grace and truth? And would it surprise you that the themes of grace and truth have been intertwined through the whole Bible story, both old and new testaments?
God revealed Himself to Moses on the mountain in Exodus 34:6,7 - identifying Himself by both Name and description. This description contains both grace and truth, translated variously as loyal love or lovingkindness, and faithfulness. He is true to His covenant promises; and He is true to His Word.
C.S. Lewis, in the quote on the back page, reminds us that if God truly loves us, then He will not leave unaddressed or untouched that which is unlovely in our lives. That is, in His grace, He will apply truth. He exercises grace in a way that does not treat sin as though it is invisible or unoffensive. And He also exercises truth in ways that graciously illuminates what is right and what is wrong; what is good and what is evil.
One church-or-the-other’s over-emphasis on either grace or truth does great damage. And we are continually learning how to balance. And, it is not as though one can ever have too much grace, or too much truth. It is just that they must be joined. I love this verse that says it well: Psalm 85:10 “Lovingkindness and truth have met together; Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.”
So let’s get rid of the idea that we can go to a “grace” church, or a “truth” church.” Let’s reject the idea that women are for grace, and men are for truth. Let’s not accept a theory that truth is for beginners, and grace for the more mature (or the other way around). Why? Because of this: John 1:14 “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”