Amazing grace – how sweet the sound, – that saved a wretch like me! I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see.
The words of this famous hymn by John Newton, written in 1772 seem to resonate with people of all theological persuasions: It is song in churches of all kinds, evangelical Christians, to Roman Catholic, to mainline liberal, to Mormon. It has been recorded by countless artists. The concept of at least the word “grace” is firmly planted in our culture. The word “Grace” can be summed up as “undeserved favor”. The Bible says that we are saved by grace. The grace of God is expressed by God’s forgiveness of our sins, and His blessing to us include peace and fulfillment in this life, and in the life to come, unencumbered fellowship with Him for all eternity. Just as the song “Amazing Grace” has gained almost universal acceptance, it is difficult to find any religious expression with roots in Christianity that does not extoll the virtues of grace. No one with even minimal exposure to Christianity would be so lacking in sensibility as to claim that he has lived a life of such good character that eternal life is owed to him. Most people will admit that they have shortcomings and are in need of God’s grace. Grace is undeserved favor; it is God’s blessing on the unworthy. Jesus illustrated true grace with the story of a father who received his runaway son with celebratory joy, a totally unworthy individual who brought nothing to his father except dishonor and shame, but his father lavished him with undeserved blessing when he returned home (Luke 15:11-24). We are saved by grace, not by a mixture of God’s grace and our works. According to Scripture, we can do nothing to earn salvation, nor are our best efforts good enough to elicit a gracious response from God to earn our salvation. All of our righteous deeds are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). Even considering our best efforts, we have fallen short of God’s standard of righteousness (Romans 3:23), and we deserve death (Romans 6:23). We are not commanded to “do our best” for God, but we are to love Him perfectly and completely (Matthew 22:37). And we fail in that. The commandment is not to “try” to love our neighbors, but to actually succeed in loving our neighbors as we love ourselves (Matthew 22:39). In spite of our “best efforts” we fail, and who can honestly claim they gave it their “best effort” anyway? We are just people, our best is so little. We are saved by grace; it is the gift of God not ours. When you work, you receive wages, and your wages are turned into an obligation that you did. But he who trust God without works, he is justified by God who justifies the ungodly. The ungodly is justified by their faith which is credited as righteousness (Romans 4:4-5). No work is involved.
Two great truths of Grace:
- God justifies the ungodly. “Not” people who have done their best, and think God owe them a pat on the back for their “best effort”. God justifies those who do not deserve it.
- God justifies people who receive salvation by faith. “Not” people who give it their best effort.
- If people are justified in any part based on what they do, they are receiving wages. Grace is a gift. If grace is based on works to any degree, then it is not grace.
- (Romans 11:6).
THE LOVE OF GOD WAS GIVEN
And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him. Luke 2:40
“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….. 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”. (John 1:16-17)
But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Genesis 6:8
The earth was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. God looked upon the earth, and indeed it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. God said to Noah, the end of all flesh has come before me, for the earth is filled with violence through them; and behold, I will destroy them with the earth. In His grace, God told Noah to build an ark of gopherwood, and God told Noah exactly how he wanted the ark to be built. And Noah and his family was saved from the flood. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. (Genesis, chapters 6-9)
You are the fairer than the sons of men; Grace is poured upon your lips; therefore God has blessed you forever. Psalms 45:2
During the days of King Saul, the Lord told the prophet Samuel to anoint a young shepherd boy as the next King over Israel. God sent Samuel to Bethlehem, where David lived with his family. (1 Samuel 16:1-4). God chose David to be king over all of his brothers, he found favor with God and were anointed as King of Israel. (1 Samuel 16:1-23
For the Lord God is the sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly, Psalms 84:11
In the New Testament the word “grace” comes from the Greek word Charis, which means “favor, blessing, or kindness.” We can all extend grace to others; but when the word grace is use in connection with God, it takes on a whole new and powerful meaning. Grace is God choosing to bless us rather than curse us as our sin deserves. It is His benevolence to the undeserving. (John 1:17)
But he giveth more grace. wherefore he said, God resists the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. James 4:6
We are saved by grace from beginning to end. Once a person has come to faith in Christ, it is not of his own doing himself, but it is God working through the Holy Spirit that draws this person into fellowship with Him, and he therefore receive salvation. (John 6:44). Even before man believe, the very desire to come to God is God’s grace at work in him to bring man into the saving grace of God. “Salvation belongs to the LORD” (Psalm 3:8), (Revelation 7:10).
Salvation by grace means that, from first to last, it is underserved. Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). Grace is not God doing 95 or even 99.9 percent, with us making up the difference. Grace is God doing 100 percent and man humble acceptance of it. recognizing that he himself is unworthy and have nothing to contribute.
This spiritual melody that we sing shine a light on “grace”
“Could my tears forever flow. “Could my zeal no languor know, “These for sin could not atone- “Thou must save, and Thou alone: “In my hand no price I bring, “Simply to Thy cross I cling. (Augustus Montague Toplady)
Jewel of Nugget / Jewels For The Soul Blog May 30, 2021 Praise The Lord!!