It’s Not Because of You
In reading through Deuteronomy, I’ve noticed a common theme that keeps reappearing. The theme is all about God’s prerogative in dishing out love. God reminds Israel on many occasions that it is He who has chosen them. He loved them and chose them to be His treasured possession. It had nothing to do with them. Here are a couple of examples:
Deut. 7:7-8 – “It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the Lord set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but it is because the Lord loves you and is keeping the oath that he swore to your fathers …”
Deut. 9:4-5 – “Do not say in your heart, after the Lord your God has thrust them out before you, ‘It is because of my righteousness that the Lord has brought me in to possess this land,’ … Not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart are you going in to possess their land …”
Deut. 14:2 – “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God, and the Lord has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.”
Again and again, the theme is this: IT’S NOT BECAUSE OF YOU! And we see it all throughout Scripture. Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.”
A gift is just that–a gift. Not something we have earned. Just something freely given. A gift, by definition, has no hidden agenda, otherwise it’s not a gift. God has no hidden agenda. There’s nothing in return we can offer that would be comparable anyway. So, that recurring message echoes through history whispering, “You’ve done nothing to earn the favor of God. It’s not because of you.”
Any special favor bestowed on us from Almighty God can only be accounted to His benevolent, endless and undeserved reservoir of grace. The moment that you or I begin to think that we’ve done something to earn the smile of God, is the moment you and I lose fellowship with Him.
Allow that truth to settle on your heart today. And let the undeserved grace of God on your life motivate you to liberally share it with those standing palms open (or fists clenched) with no gift.