Grace (and Truth)
John 1:14 says, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
I have always liked this description of Jesus. I’ve heard a number of expositions on what it looked like for Jesus to be “full of grace and truth.” What did that look like? Not only did He always completely tell the truth, He WAS truth (John 14:6). Vine’s exposition on alētheia (truth in Greek) says it is “truth” in all its fullness and scope, as embodied in Him” and also that Jesus “was the perfect expression of the truth.” Not just verbal truth, but “sincerity and integrity of character.”
And what about the grace portion of that character description? The root word from which charitos comes, charis, is defined by Strong’s Concordance as “(a) grace, as a gift or blessing brought to man by Jesus Christ, (b) favor, (c) gratitude, thanks, (d) a favor, kindness.” Charitos
is further defined there as “‘the grace of Christ,’ in that through pity for sinful men Christ left his state of blessedness with God in heaven, and voluntarily underwent the hardships and miseries of human life, and by his sufferings and death procured salvation for mankind.”
That’s quite a mouthful, isn’t it? I’m very familiar, as I’m sure many of you are, with the “full of grace and truth” description of Jesus. I’ve thought a number of times, rather than of these qualities being in full measure in Jesus’ character and being, of how they must have defined His words to others. We ourselves (okay, I’ll speak on myself here) often seem to lean one way or another in our words. We can be heavy on the truth yet speak it without kindness, thoughtlessly, or maybe at times when others’ hearts aren’t prepared for the truth and there is harm done rather than lovingkindness expressed.
Or maybe we lean too hard into grace, and don’t speak the truth God has given us because of fear or timidity.
What if we strive to combine hard truths with the grace Jesus would speak them with?
I think of the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus didn’t yell “Sinful, unfaithful woman!” to her when she began to converse with Him. Nor did He say, “Well, I know you’re kind of living in sin–but that’s okay! You’re awesome!” No, He spoke truth to her but He did it gently, kindly, and fully.
Resulting in her redemption and that of many in her village…even though they were of a race that the Jews disliked and avoided.
Grace and truth…spoken together.
Blogging Through the Alphabet
So, this week’s letter is G! Visit Amanda from Hopkins Homeschool and Annette from A Net In Time, the co-hosts of Blogging Through The Alphabet, to see more bloggers sharing about their thoughts and words about G! Or, just click on the button above, which will take you to the link.