TEXT: John 1:14-16
Gresham Machen once said, “The very centre and core of the whole Bible is the doctrine of the grace of God”. Grace is the most important concept in the Bible, Christianity and the world (Eph 2:8). Grace is the most clearly expressed subject in the promises of God revealed in the scriptures and embodied in Jesus Christ. Jesus is grace personified (Titus 2:9-11). Grace is the basis of our relationship with God. It is impossible to live the Christian life without grace or the understanding of grace (Romans 8:32)
The first mention of grace in the Old and New Testament and the second are in relation to the work of salvation or God redeeming man (Gen 6:8, Luk 1:30, Exo 33:14-14). But what is grace?
Grace has so many definitions:
- Grace is unmerited favour. God’s love to the undeserving (John 3:16, Eph 2:1).
- Strong concordance defines grace as the divine influence upon the heart of man and its reflection in the life.
- Vine Expository Dictionary defines grace as divine favour that practically affects the spiritual state of those who have experienced its exercise and equipping them for service.
- Grace is God coming down to man’s level and elevating him to His own level. It is the love that cares, stoops and rescues (Phil 2:7-9).
The grace in the life of Jesus was boundless:
- From childhood the grace of God was upon Him (Luke 2:40)
- He was full of grace (John 1:14)
- He brought grace with Him (John 1:17)
- He tasted death for every man by the grace of God (Hebrews 2:9)
As His children, we must understand that grace is important. God’s throne is called “the throne of grace” (Hebrews 4:16). The Gospel is called the Gospel of grace (Acts 20:24). The Word of God is called “the Word of grace” (Acts 20:32). The Holy Spirit is called “the Spirit of grace” “Hebrews 10:29). God is called “the God of all grace” (1 Peter 5:10). Jesus is grace personified (Titus 2:9-11).
Grace is the basis for:
- Our Christian identity (1 Cor 1:10).
- Our standing before God (Rom 5:2).
- Our living (Rom 5:17).
- Our way of speaking (Col 4:6)
Grace is also the basis of: Our strength (2 Tim 2:1, Heb 13:9), Our Sufficiency (2 Cor 2:9) and Our growth (2 Peter 3:18)
So, what does Grace have to offer?
Grace planned our salvation (2 Tim 1:8-9), Grace offers salvation (Titus 2:9-11), Grace gives us faith to be saved (Eph 2:8). Grace equips us to serve God (Rom 12:4-6, Acts 4:33). Grace makes us who we are (1 Cor 15:9-10). Grace makes us rich (2 Cor 8:9)
The difference between Law and Grace cannot be overemphasized (John 1:14-17, Mat 5:17-30). Law deals with the outward look and experience (acts) while grace deals with the inside (heart). Law punishes while grace forgives. Law brings death, grace brings life. The law says stone the prodigal son, grace says put the best robes on him (Deut 1:20-21, Luke 15:20-23)