12 For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. 13 By their approval of this service, they will glorify God because of your submission flowing from your confession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others, 14 while they long for you and pray for you, because of the surpassing grace of God upon you. 15 Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!
2 Corinthians 9:12-15
Grace is defined as the free, unmerited favor of God (Oxford Dictionary). Grace is marked by humility and gift. Those who receive the gift of salvation from God are humbled by the Giver and the gift because of the radical nature of the gifts perfection and radical nature of the receiver’s imperfection.
It would make perfect sense, then, that our lives are full of pictures of grace and that sin continually crouches at our door in more inconspicuous was through pride and hoarding. God is glorified the most in the lives of those who find lasting joy in Him, as the all-sufficient grace bestower. Satan hates God’s glory. So, Satan hates grace!
How is sin evident in you? Satan loves it when Christians fail in impurity and greed. Satan also loves it when Christians cannot seem to “forgive themselves” or be relieved from the guilt of their sin. Either way, God’s glory is dulled in the eyes of men.
1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
1 John 2:1-2
We shouldn’t sin. We need to throw out all things that cause us to sin or provide the medium for our sin. We should battle. One day, we will win forever. Until then, there will be sin. We will sin. We will absolutely do what Christians shouldn’t. We shouldn’t plot for it, plan on it, or embrace it upon it’s commission…but we will. And if / when we do, grace comes UPON grace.
You have an advocate.
The Righteous One.
The all-sufficient One.
Whenever we sin and either remain in it or hold on to the guilt, we are saying none of the above. Think about it. If (you don’t have to) / when (you’re in a fallen world) you sin, you have an ADVOCATE. The reminder of Christ in this passage is the gospel work of Christ that perseveres in the life of the believer. Grace is greater than your sin because Jesus is greater…NOT because you can overcome it, but because HE HAS overcome!
Holding on to sin-guilt reminds of those ugly dog contests:
We hold on to sin guilt like it’s a pet that others will feel sorry that we have to love. How can we say guilt is something we must bear when Christ has paid for it all? How can we say we must bear something when Christ alone is sufficient to save? Do we read too much into Christ needing help carrying the cross up the hill? NO ONE helped Him bear the weight of sin on that cross. He doesn’t need your help bearing that weight now. What weight?
Sin is atoned for, forever, for the believer. Whatever weight of sin you bear today, run to your advocate. See the wrath-bearing One risen, at the right hand of God, deserving of worship for the grace upon grace offered, given, and administered freely to the beloved.