Friday, February 01, 2008

Book Discussions: The Discipline of Grace

Welcome back to the book club for another year!

We had a first book club meeting last night, and we’ve begun reading Jerry Bridges Book, The Discipline of Grace. Some of us had read the first chapter, but others hadn’t so our discussion revolved mainly around grace, and some of the points in the first chapter.

In our discussions, we recognised again, how important Grace is and how an understanding of the ‘Doctrines of Grace’ is both liberating and motivating in our walk with God. Liberating because we realise that our salvation is not linked to our ‘performance’ as Christians. We know that God will preserve us, and that he didn’t choose us because of our ‘performance’. Grace is also motivating because we understand the magnitude and glory of what Christ has done for us, and that he did it while we were still sinners, it spurs us on to live a life that glorifies and pleases Him. Preaching the gospel to ourselves daily keeps grace in our sights and leads us to an even greater love for our Saviour.

For those of our readers who have not heard or understood the biblical doctrines of grace click here. This link sumarises the doctrines, as well as their corresponding errors. The link also provides biblical supports for the Doctrines of Grace.

When grace is not properly understood, our motivation for pursuing holiness and doing good becomes distorted. Rather than being obedient and living holy lives to glorify God and please Him, we do it to keep our salvation (though we barely recognise that this is what we are doing). We try keep ourselves in a good relationship with God and prevent ourselves from ‘backsliding’ through doing good. The problem is of course, that our good can never be good enough.

‘We need to continue to hear the gospel ever day of our Christian lives. Only a continuous reminder of the gospel of God’s grace through Christ will keep us from falling into good-day – bad-day thinking, wherein we think our daily relationship with God is based on how good we’ve been.’
It is only the joy of hearing the gospel and being reminded that our sins are forgiven in Christ that will keep the demands of discipleship from becoming drudgery. It is only gratitude and love to God that comes from knowing that He no longer counts our sins against us (Romans 4:8) that provides the proper motive for responding to the claims of discipleship.’ Pg 21

At the next meeting on the 14th of February we will be discussing Chapter 1: How Good is Good Enough? and Chapter 2: The Pharisee and the Tax Collector

No comments: