Monday, June 9, 2014

Remember Grace

1Corinthians 1:3-4    "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that has been given you in Christ Jesus," 
Deuteronomy 6:6-9  "Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead,and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates."

If we read the letters of Paul, we are bound to notice that Paul begins most of his epistles with a greeting that mentions grace.  The beginning of letters are always read, but rarely pondered because the introduction is supposed to usher in the main idea of the message, but Paul had an important purpose for mentioning the grace of God in the introduction of his letters.  

Peter indicates that Christians considered Paul's writings to be scripture, even at the time they were written. In 2 Peter 3:16, Peter says "…speaking of this as he does in all his letters. There are some things in them hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures."  NRSV emphasis mine.

Paul knew the repetition of scripture was an important Jewish practice, as Deuteronomy 6:6-9 illustrates The idea of putting God's commandments on our doorposts to greet our visitors is echoed in Paul's greetings in his scripture lettersRepeatedly reminding ourselves of God's grace helps us to keep grace constantly in our own hearts.