I went to a church school, and took the required Bible courses.  I wanted (and did great in) the computer courses.  The other stuff didn’t seem to matter a whole lot.

I picked up some of the lingo, of course.  One pair of words that stuck with me was imparted and imputed.  It has to do with God’s grace, and how we get it.  I don’t remember which side of the fence the Nazarenes come down on, and it didn’t really make a difference to me.  As long as you have God’s grace, it doesn’t really matter.  No big deal.

Wrongo, bucko.

I realized as I was making lunch one day this week that there’s all the difference in the world.  The words are close, but have a very different meaning.  Imparted means that God has given His grace to you, that you have it and carry it with you.  Imputed means that you have it on a balance sheet somewhere, but you don’t have it in you.

That’s a big difference, and a big deal.  The first is like having a battery with you.  The second is like being on an extension cord.  In the first situation, you’re unplugged.  In the second, you’re totally dependent on the external power source.

I think the second is true.  I want to be totally dependent on God, all the time, for everything.  When I start thinking I can do things on my own, separated from God – well, that’s bad.

I don’t have any scriptures to back up either position.  I’m sure they’re out there, but I haven’t gone digging on theological sites.

I still think I’m right.  But either way, it is true that Jesus died on a cross to pay the debt for your sins, and it is only by accepting His sacrifice that you can be saved.  Good works don’t cut it.  Good intentions are in the same boat – nice, but insufficient.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God – Romans 3:23

it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment – Hebrews 9:27

He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned – Mark 16:16

It’s simple.  It’s not easy, but it’s simple.  And it’s necessary.  It is a big deal.  On this Good Friday, accept the gift.