“Just Little Sinners Saved By Grace!”

Today around the world, millions of people will be marked with ashes for Ash Wednesday. They will hear the words, “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

This was not part of my religious tradition growing up, and so I’ve been thinking about this since this comic strip is being posted on Ash Wednesday. This is not designed to be an Ash Wednesday comic strip, it is just a follow up to last week’s “Laser Eyes Jesus” comic strip series “Giving Up Bad Stuff That’s Fun” and “So What About The Bad Stuff Anyway?”. Still it does incorporate a bit of the self-reflective purpose of Lent as I understand it.

So what do you think? Should you view yourself as “just a little sinner saved by grace”? Is that how Jesus views you?

I guess my question is, in a season of contemplation, or really in any season or individual day, is it good and right to call myself “a sinner saved by grace”?

There is no doubt in my mind that I am…

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God – not the result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV)

…but is that how I should label myself? Is that how Jesus labels us as believers?

I imagine a Heavenly Banquet where the doors are opened, then you and I are welcomed in by Jesus. How will He introduce us? “Look, Father, here are my little sinners saved by grace!” This does not ring true in my heart.

“Look, Father, here is my workmanship, made from dust and ashes, redeemed, and loved! My new creation!” This does ring more true in my heart.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 (KJV)

What this all means and how it all comes together, I’m still learning, but I do like the idea of being reminded both at the same time and all together we are “dust and ashes, His workmanship.”

12 thoughts on ““Just Little Sinners Saved By Grace!”

  1. Hey, John. I often write about the “Good News” of salvation by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone. This is to emphasize we bring nothing to salvation, it’s all through faith in Christ and even that’s a gift. People that come from a works religiosity would look at that and call it “cheap grace” i.e., just pray a prayer and then do whatever you want. But as your reference to Ephesians 2:10 points out, we are “created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” So our imperfect charity and obedience are very important as we follow the Lord, we just can’t point to them as the basis of our justification.

    I had a dialogue with someone recently who claimed to be “resting” in Christ because they didn’t like the guilt that came with Jesus’ (and preachers’) admonitions to follow and obey Him. I believe rather that we should be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Yes, we should rest in Christ as far as our salvation goes but then follow Him (albeit imperfectly) in His power and in His service. Following Jesus through His power then becomes a joy rather than a guilt-heavy burden.

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    1. Thanks, Tom. I will tell you the truth, and this may be coming from my forgetfulness but when I was putting this together, I looked for “by grace you have been saved” and got that verse Ephesians 2:8-9…then I looked for “His workmanship created for good works” and got that verse Epheshians 2:10…It wasn’t until I looked at both of them side by side that I realized that they were from the same passage! Isn’t that kind of wild!?! It’s like in my mind they had been separated (most likely because they are often taught or preached in two different messages?), but in the Bible they’re not! I like the way that you put them both together in your comment! Very cool!

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      1. Yup, Ephesians 2:8-10 puts grace, faith, and works in the proper sequence. It’s an absolutely amazing 3-verse passage; so much truth in so few words.

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  2. So good! I used to love thinking of myself as a “sinner saved by grace” because it emphasized his outrageous love. What type of a God stoops down in the mud to redeem something that seems irreperably broken? But then, of course, we must ask, “Did Jesus succeed in his mission?” Because if he did, then we are no longer defined by the “sinner” label. Going even further, maybe we never were defined that way at all. Maybe it was our idea all along to place our identity in our depraved actions. Maybe he still thought of us as his creation, his children, his beloved. Could it be that his work of redemption was to restore us to our original place as sons and daughters, defined only by their heritage as God’s children?

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    1. Thanks, Stephen! Really appreciate your comments. I often wonder how the world would change if everyone saw themselves and their neighbors just as God sees! I really like your question “Did Jesus succeed in His mission?” Awesome!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Funny you should ask! Part of that is actually in tomorrow’s (Thursday’s comic strip), but not all of it.

      (Hey! Have you been looking. Over my shoulder?!?)

      I can tell you it really doesn’t hurt the children though. I wouldn’t want any kids having nightmares! Or grownups thinking I hated kids!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sorry to say that I’m not looking over your shoulder which I wouldn’t mind doing because it would be nice to see how you draw them. I don’t think you hate kids but just curious what the laser’s do?

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a new follower, so I went to his blog and he wrote a poem about the world’s spiritual condition and then wrote about it. In it, he said we were maggots, ugly and feeding on garbage. I thought it was interesting. Lol But then he said that Jesus became a maggot and lived with us. That didn’t seem right at all.

    Jesus became a sinless human being, like Adam was when he was created. As for us being maggots, well, we were made in God’s image; we are precious to God; so I guess his image of humans is wrong. Right? Lol

    I don’t remember if it was you or someone else who wrote about believers all being holy. Holy means being set apart for God’s use. So, for the first time I can see where we are holy. It’s an interesting subject.

    How will Jesus introduce us? I love that part. I think he will say, “Here are our children.” He said his disciples were his mother, father, sister and brother. I think we should label ourselves, “Children of God.”

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