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Scruffy Kid
Feb 16th 2011, 04:41 PM
What has happened is that God's grace
-- the effective presence that came to us with power
(and apart from anything we could ever accomplish) --
has appeared to bring us the fundamental human healing we need,
which is intended for everyone.

His grace teaches us to steer away from the arrogance of trying to live
in indifference to God, or without referring our lives and hopes to Him,
and instead to live lives that are full of integrity and respect,
arising from a mind healed and redeemed (even right now!)
as we contemplate the wonderful shining event we hope for:
God our healer appearing to us, our great Savior and God, Jesus,
annointed by God's Spirit, Who gave Himself for us,
to lift us out of the vile tawdriness of our own tendencies and impulses,
and to refine among us a pure-hearted people, eager to do good things.

Be strong, pastors, authoritative to teach this! None should take it lightly!
Let them, rather, be good citizens, always ready to do good,
with harsh words for no one, gentle rather than quarrelsome,
always restrained in dealing with others.

For after all, we too used to act in hateful ways, and to hate others,
as people obsessed, rebellious slaves of our own desires.

But God made Himself known to us, showing us His kindness and love,
and rescued us -- but because we had acted rightly in any way,
but in the pattern of His own great and kind mercies -- washing us,
and forming us again from scratch, making us new by the Holy Spirit,
which He poured out without limit into our hearts,
through Christ our Savior, to make us just and Holy, by His pure gift,
so that we might inherit unending life,
which is His life that He lives eternally, and our sustaining hope.

episkopos
Feb 16th 2011, 04:49 PM
4But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. 8This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men.

Scruffy Kid
Feb 16th 2011, 06:09 PM
Thanks.

Well yes of course -- but I started the reflection -- or paraphrase -- at 2:11 rather than 3:4 (of Paul's letter to Titus).
I assumed that, generally, lots of people would recognize the passage -- and I want to consider its thought as a whole.

But I'd like to get thoughts, comment, from board members as I also seek to understand the gospel of grace and holiness here presented!

Blessings,
Scruff