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GRACE: WHAT IS IT?

graceGrace a simple word with profound meaning for all of us, take the definition of the noun: simple elegance or refinement of movement; the verb definition: do honor or credit to (someone or something) by one’s presence.  Now take the Biblical definition: the free and unmerited favor of God; as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.  They are all visually painting beautiful pictures by their definitions of the word grace; now let’s take in these quote’s from some theologians, authors, and men of God:

 

“Grace is the most important concept in the Bible, Christianity, and the world.  It is most clearly expressed in the promises of God revealed in Scripture and embodied in Jesus Christ.  Grace is the love of God shown to the unlovely, the peace of God given to the restless, the unmerited favor of God.” -Justin Holcomb

“Many professing Christians today utterly ignore the biblical truth that grace instructs us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously, and godly in the present age.” (Titus 2:12) Instead they live as if grace were a supernatural “Get out of jail free ticket-a no strings-attached, open-ended package of amnesty, beneficence, indulgence, forbearance, charity, leniency, immunity, approval, tolerance, and self-awarded privilege divorced from any moral demands.” -John MacArthur

Then there are some people who have defined grace as:

“Grace is sovereign favor to the ill-deserving.” -B.B. Warfield

“Grace is love that cares and stoops and rescues.” -John Stott

“Grace is God reaching downward to people who are in rebellion against him.” -Jerry Bridges

“Grace is unconditional love toward a person who does not deserve it.” -Paul Zahl

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES: 

These all make good points when it comes to what grace could be but, let’s look at what the scriptures say about this little word grace:

Ephesians 2: 8-9 “For by Grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing: it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

Psalms 45:2 “You are the most handsome of the sons of men: grace is poured upon your lips; therefore God has blessed you forever.”

Proverbs 22:11 “He who loves purity of heart, and whose speech is gracious, will have the king as his friend.”

Isaiah 26:10 “If favor/grace is shown to the wicked, he does not learn righteousness; in the land of uprightness he deals corruptly and does not see the majesty of the Lord.”

John 1:14-17 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.  John bore witness about him and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.  For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.  For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”

Acts 4:33 “And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.”

Acts 15:11 “But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”

Acts 20:24 “But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.”

Acts 20:32 “And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.”

Romans 1:5 “Through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations, including you who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.”

Romans 3:24 “and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”

Romans 5:2 “Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”

Romans 5:15-17 “But the free gift is not like the trespass.  For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin.  For the judgement following one trespass brought condemnation, but, the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.”

Romans 5:21 “so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Romans 6:14-15 “For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!

Romans 11:6 “But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace.”

Romans 12:3 “For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgement, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.”

Romans 16:20 “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”

I Corinthians 3:10 “According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it.  Let each one take care how he builds upon it.”

I Corinthians 15:10 “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me.”

2 Corinthians 12:9 “Be he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

Ephesians 1:6-7 “To the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.”

Ephesians 2:7-9 “so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved thtough faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

Ephesians 3:7 “Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God’s grace, which was given me by the working of his power.”

Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

I Timothy 1:14 “and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.”

2 Timothy 2:1 “You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus.”

Titus 2:11 “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people.”

Hebrews 2:9 “But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.”

Hebrews 4:16 “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

Hebrews 12:15 “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God: that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled.”

James 4:6 “But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

I Peter 1:13 “Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

I Peter 5:5 “Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

I Peter 5:10 “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”

2 Peter 1:2 “May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.”

Jude 1:4 “For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sesuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

Revelation 22:21 “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.”

My prayer is that you study what the scriptures say about Grace and ask God to reveal it more and more in your life so that you can shout it from the rooftops, “GRACE!!” when you need it and the peace of Christ on a daily basis.  I truly hope this inspires you to walk these scriptures out and continue on your daily journey with God to build a relationship with him and not just a religious experience that is stale and old; make it fresh each day.  But, let it begin with Grace.

JHollis -Life-Line Worldwide

 

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