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Devotionals :: Day by Day by Grace :: Today's Reading

Hoekstra's Day by Day by Grace (May 4th)

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Tablets of Stone versus Human Hearts

You are manifestly an epistle of Christ…written…not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. (2 Corinthians 3:3)

The old covenant of law was written upon "tablets of stone." The new covenant of grace is written upon "tabletsof the heart." This is another vital contrast between the old and new covenants. This difference again decides whether we draw upon man's sufficiency or upon God's.

The old covenant message of God's law was written on stones. It called man to holiness, as measured by the character of God. "You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy" (Leviticus 19:2). The message is magnificent. However, its impact would be limited (by design), since it was written on "tablets of stone." It was inscribed upon an inanimate object that was external to human lives. Consequently, it could not bring life or any provision for transforming lives. The law would function as a perfect standard, revealing our unholiness and convicting us of our need for what Jesus Christ alone could offer. We needed to have the perfect message of the law (holiness) implanted in our innermost being. This is what the new covenant of grace accomplishes.

The new covenant message of God's grace is written on human hearts: "on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart." Grace not only forgives our failure before the law, but it works to develop personal holiness at the very core of our being. This was the promise God gave through His prophets of old, that He would put His holy law into peoples' hearts. The book of Hebrews applies this promise to all believers in Jesus Christ."This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts" (Hebrews 10:16).

What hope we have through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ! Now, God transfers His holiness from an outside standard to an internal resource. Now, the Lord is making His holy requirements an internal part of our being, as we humbly trust in Him. God is stirring holy desires in us, as we earnestly seek after Him. God is developing holy priorities within us and providing spiritual strength within us to walk in more and more godliness. "It is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure" (Philippians 2:13).

O Holy Father, I would be hopeless, if Your perfect standard remained outside of me, demanding holiness by my performance. Thank You for bringing Your holy will inside of my life, providing internal resource for living and growing in godliness. Lord, I look to You to transform me from the inside out, in Jesus' name, Amen.

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