Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The Parable of the Website Template

Here is a parable to illustrate the Gospel truth that being under grace doesn't mean we are allowed to live lawlessly - it means we are empowered to live right.

A certain person wanted to post a personal page on a free web hosting site. The free site gave him two options for creating and uploading his page:
  1. He could use HTML to create his page, or
  2. He could opt to use one of the site's free web-page templates - which required no knowledge of HTML [recommended for beginners]
At first, the person tried his hand at HTML. But he soon discovered that every little detail he desired for his web page required its own HTML "command". And if he got one command or code slightly wrong, the whole thing didn't look right, and it looked unacceptable.

He soon realized his inability, so he changed his mind and opted to use one of the easy-to-use templates instead. All the features he wanted on his web page were already built-in, including colour, font and style because the HTML codes or "commands" were automatically written into the template. No HTML knowledge or skill on his part was required. All he had to do was select and click "upload" - easy. The final result looked exactly how it would look if an expert made it using computer programming commands.

There were two methods: programming commands (HTML) or template (pre-programming). Both could achieve the same result in theory - however, only the last method was able to be used by an unskilled person.

Because of sin, all of us were unskilled at righteousness. But thank God, the Gospel has the same power in our lives as that template! When we were under the Law, we were unable to keep the Law, due to sin dwelling in our bodies - like a person who doesn't know the HTML commands. But now through the New Covenant, God has programmed our hearts to keep His laws, to walk in His ways, to fulfill the righteousness of the Law - causing us to achieve the same result, just like the man who opted for the website template. All we had to do was accept Christ (select and click "upload") - then we received His righteousness as a free gift, and we were empowered to walk in God's ways.

"...this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts..."

Through the New Covenant, through the power of the cross, and the blood, through the new birth, through Christ and through the indwelling Spirit - God has given us a brand new heart which bears His nature. God is love, and we are made partakers of the divine nature, therefore we are now able to walk in love. And love is the fulfilling of the Law. Therefore by a new and living way, the righteousness of the Law is fulfilled in us.

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