His bark wasn’t worst than his bite, because he seldom barked...and he never bit. However, there was on thing that could make Rex bark. Sometimes when a bird or a flock of birds flew over on a sunny day, Rex often chased their shadows on the ground. I can recall watching as one bird flew around in a circle with Rex chasing the circling shadow on the ground, barking the whole time. Poor, dumb, bird-brained Rex–he never figured out the shadow wasn’t real.
Sadly, there are many well-meaning Christians who are doing the same thing. They are chasing shadows: They are still trying to please God by keeping religious rules and observing religious rituals. In this message, I want to examine some of the substitutes for grace, and then talk about the differences between legalism-based churches and grace-based churches.
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Steven Chapman on Feb 8, 2001
Dr. Ellin Greene, of the University of Chicago, has said, "We get so quickly sidetracked from the simple story nature of our faith. We begin to think that theology saves us, that truth is somehow embodied in our theology of the Atonement, or our mastery of eschatological charts. But when Jesus ...read more
Contributed by Bruce Howell on May 30, 2001
Illus.: “The Boy Who Believes in the Holy Spirit Isn’t Here” A children’s catechism class was learning the Apostles Creed. Each child had been assigned a sentence to repeat. The first one said, “I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and ...read more
Contributed by A. Todd Coget on Jun 21, 2001
[Christian Contradictions, Citation: Joseph Roy, Leadership, Vol. 5, no. 4.] A true Christian is a sign of contradiction--a living symbol of the Cross. He or she is a person who believes the unbelievable, bears the unbearable, forgives the unforgivable, loves the unlovable, is perfectly happy ...read more
Contributed by Evie Megginson on Aug 3, 2001
Dr. H. A. Ironside, in his Lectures on Acts, recalls the story his mother told about his own dear father’s dying hour. The mother said, "Your father had this passage running through his mind. He kept repeating it constantly. ‘A great sheet and wild beasts and-and…’ He could ...read more