THE THIRD WEEK IN ADVENT – WEDNESDAY
LESSON: ROMANS 1:16,17
The gospel of the grace of God. Acts 20:24
The Gospel is neither Law nor command; it makes no demands on us. If wretched distress and misery in the heart have come about through the first word of the Law, the Gospel comes as a loving and living word; it promises and assures us, undertaking to give us grace and help so that we may get out of such distress. It not only forgives us our sins but actually destroys them and, in addition, gives us love and the desire to fulfill the Law. This divine assurance of God’s grace and the forgiveness of sins is what the Gospel really is.
I say once more that one should not understand the Gospel as anything else but God’s promise of grace and the forgiveness of sins.
The reason why Paul’s epistles have for so long been misunderstood and, indeed, cannot be understood, is that men do not really know what is Law and what is Gospel. They regard Christ as a lawgiver and the Gospel as nothing but the proclamation of a new law. This is nothing else but locking up the Gospel and hiding everything.
PRAYER: Enlighten us, O Lord, in such a way by your Holy Spirit, that we really understand that your sole purpose and aim in the revelation of your Gospel is to lead us to salvation as a completely free gift of your wonderful grace in Christ. Amen.