GANDHI AND GRACE
Dikirim oleh : Ardhian Hatmadji

This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:22-23 (NIV)

Although Mahatma Gandhi died in 1948, his legacy of nonviolence has lived on through his influence on Martin Luther King, Jr., among others. Even though he was a Hindu, he has won praise from those of all religious backgrounds because of his efforts to build a more peaceful society. Some think that Gandhi will be in heaven because of the moral life he lived.

But even Gandhi had his doubts that living a moral life was enough to make a person right with God. He confessed that it was "an unbroken torture" that "evil passions within…keep me so far from Him." In biblical terms, Gandhi toiled under the heavy weight of the law of God written on his heart (Rom. 2:15). He sorely needed the healing power of God’s grace, a payment of his spiritual debt.

Sadly, despite his many close Christian friends, Gandhi never bowed his knee to Jesus as Lord. When asked about his beliefs, he said, "I am a Christian and a Hindu and a Moslem and a Jew." Echoing the feelings of many in our own day, Gandhi could not understand why (or how) Jesus was the only way to God.

The short answer to Gandhi’s question is that only Jesus can eliminate what stands between human beings and a right relationship with the God who made us. As God incarnate, only Jesus was able to deal a death blow to sin (Col.2:13-15).

What Gandhi needed to know — and what many need to know today — is that humankind’s cosmic shortcomings can never be bridged by hopeless attempts to fully obey the moral law within us. We live in a universe created by a perfect, loving God who demands perfection that even the Gandhis of this world can’t achieve. That’s why we need Jesus on our side.

Matt Donnelly, for the ChristianityToday.com staff