September 02, 2022 – Friday
Hebrews 13:9 NIV
9 Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings. It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, not by eating ceremonial foods, which is of no benefit to those who do so.
Hebrews 13:9 KJV
9 Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.
There were many in the Jewish community who wished to impose all kinds of teachings upon Christians, many related to the laws of Moses, but beyond them. The writer of Hebrews in this last chapter of many exhortations, wants these new Christians (and us) to avoid such teachings and focus instead on grace stating, It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace NIV or it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace KJV. The NIV follows up with, not by eating ceremonial foods, which is of no benefit to those who do so while the KJV with, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.
Whether our hearts are to be strengthened by grace or that the heart is to be established with grace, the key is to focus on grace. The point being that while grace is often spoken of and heard, it is not sufficiently understood by those hearing it. MacLaren’s Expositions states about grace, it is from the depths of His own infinite heart, not because of what we are, but because of what He is, transcends all the rigid retributions of law, is not turned away by my sin, but continues to flood the world, simply because it wells up from the infinite and changeless fountain of love in the heart of God. Then he added, from this central, deepest meaning of active love manifesting itself irrespective of what we deserve, there comes a second great aspect of the word. The cause gives its name to the effect, and the communicated blessings and gifts which flow to men from the love of God are designated by this great name.
We should never begin to take God’s grace, which is offered irrespective of what we deserve. And that is what should strengthen us and establish us in our faith. Grace is our undeserved, unmerited, unearned forgiveness of our sins. It is all too easy to start taking this wonderful gift for granted after a period of time thinking we are somehow special. We are not, except that we have accepted this free gift. We should not look down upon any who have yet to accept this free gift of grace. Once we were like them. Our prayer should be they will one day be like us, saved by the gift of grace.
Let us continually be strengthened by grace, always aware of what a wonderful undeserved gift it is. Let that always be the foundation that establishes our faith, knowing what Jesus did for us on the cross.
Bottom Line: Grace changes everything for each of us individually and should change how we look upon others as well.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for the wonderful gift of grace. Help us to never forget it comes to us through Your amazing love and mercy for us. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton