Who is Joanan?
Luke 3: 27 “the son of Joanan”
He was the grandson of Zerubbabel, the governor of Judah who laid the foundation of the second Temple. During the time of trying to motivate the people, an angel spoke to him, “What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become a plain; and he will bring forth the top stone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!” (Zechariah 4:7)
The name of Joanan means “Yahweh has been gracious.”
Whenever Joanan was called or used his name ‘Grace’ was shouted! Whenever he saw people going into the Temple he knew it was because of Grace.
Grace attaches itself to who we are and our identity. We become gracious. We sow graciously, reap in grace, move in grace and give with grace. In Acts 4: 33 it says “And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.”
All of your life and achievement, all that you own or have become, it’s not yours by entitlement, God has graced it to you for others.
If you really want to gauge your love for God then look at your love for people.
Jesus did not spend time with the sinners who may have stopped reading their Bible that morning. But he spent time with people society called sinners.
When we get to heaven we will be standing with countless people dressed in white robes according to the Revelation. Who will these people be? Will it be those who have ticked all the right boxes of Christianity?
The people who knew all there was to know?
Or do you not think there will be the prostitute who found herself in this situation by deception and lies; the sexually abused boy who is now selling his body; the addict; those in debt; those scorned and shamed; how did they get here?
I was welcomed into a Church recently where the person at the door made a sarcastic remark about gays not being welcome. I was appalled. It made me sick.
I challenged the person later and what shocked me the most was that there was no hint of grace.
I want to shout from the rooftops over every Church in the UK, “Where is grace? Show me grace!”
The key to revival is grace.
There is no Church without grace.
Joanan and his grandfather would come today and point the church outwards to a needy broken and sinful world and say the kingdom of God still needs building.
How will this mountain be removed?
By means of strategic strength, might, energy, power?
But by grace!
Joanan! Grace! Grace! Grace!