And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. ~John 1:14
For me there is no other verse in the Bible that better or more succinctly describes the character and nature of our Lord and Savior.
When I think about Jesus being “full of grace and truth,” my mind’s eye pictures little children running to Christ and wanting simply to be in His presence. When Jesus is known for who He is, to be in His presence is more than enough.
Full of grace. Always ready to give away undeserved love, affection, and favor. Extending second chances. And third chances. And umpteen other chances. Displaying mercy in abundance. Loving all the way.
Full of truth. No deception. No trickery. No “white lies”. No pretending. Standing strong in storms of assaults against the gospel of grace. Telling it straight (about sin and everything else).
Not grace at the expense of truth (pretending that grace doesn’t include truth).
Not truth at the expense of grace (pretending that truth doesn’t include grace).
Full of grace and truth.
Should not this same phrase mark us, as followers of Christ, and as His church?
Are we willing to love those to whom we owe the truth?
Are we willing to tell the truth to those we claim to love – and in fact live the truth as witnesses before them?
When grace and truth go together – as they should – we realize that we’re very much in need of a Savior because of the depth of our depravity. But we also realize that our Savior loves us with a love so powerful that human language fails to do it justice.
Grace and truth.
Were we marked by those characteristics as consistently as we ought to be, it might be hard to get us to fight each other. I say that for two reasons: 1. We’d be quick to forgive, knowing how much we’ve been forgiven; and 2. We’d be too busy sharing Jesus with a lost world desperately in need of grace and truth.
Sounds like a plan.