One of the temptations of sinful men and women is to try to make deals with God. This is a great folly on a number of levels: we are not in any position to make deals with the God of the universe. And even if we could saunter up to His throne, we would have nothing to barter with. All that we have is filthy rags. And God possesses all things. There is nothing that we could offer that God does not already have in full abundance.
And yet we are still sinful fools, and we think that because we are feeling good, God must be happy with us, and if we are feeling bad, it must be because God is not happy with us. We offer God some tiny shred of obedience and think that means He owes us a good day, a good month, a good year. But God does not owe us anything.
The only thing that God accepts is Christ. But in Christ, God is overflowing with blessing and kindness. And so it is here at this table. You cannot do anything here to earn God’s favor. This is no bargaining table. This is a table of sheer grace. Everything here is free. The forgiveness is free. The blessing is free. But if you come to offer anything in exchange for this free gift, it will evaporate in your hands, in your mouths. The only way to keep this gift is to bring nothing at all. The only way to keep this gift is to know that there is nothing you could bring.
And this remains true even when you have been walking with Christ for many years. The only way up in Christ is down. The only way to greatness in the Kingdom is humility. This is not a mind game where you try to think of ways you aren’t worthy in order to get God to say you actually are worthy. That’s the temptation to deal-making trying to sneak back in. But there are no deals. There are no bargains. There is only Christ and His free grace.
So Come and welcome to Jesus Christ.