Trying to fully explain grace is like trying to capture a butterfly with our bare hands on a windy day. Knowing and understanding God’s grace can be hard to grasp. We can chase it and try to make meaning of it. We can try to understand it’s path, where it came from and even where it led us. But in the end we come to realize that God’s grace far surpasses anything we could ever truly understand or do justice with words to explain.
But, we will try anyway.
It will be helpful for us to look at a few passages that speak about grace.
In the Old Testament,
“And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, ‘The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation.’” Exodus 34:6-7
“He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities.” Psalm 103:10
The New Testament
“For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life though the One, Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:17,
“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence,” Ephesians 1:7-8
What an overwhelming image of who God is in relation to who we are. I read over those passages and see some obvious realities about who I am:
- I need forgiveness from my sin
- My sins require punishment, which I have not received in appropriate measure.
- I can be redeemed through His blood.
- In the past, present and future, I can be forgiven from my sin
- I can receive the benefits of grace which is lavished on me.
But did you catch on to where I fit in.
I receive but do not contribute. God does not need me to contribute anything in order for me to receive what He will give:
- Jesus showers mercy on me
- He is tremendously patient with me each day
- My Savior abounds in all good things no matter how I act today
- He freely equips me with truth to live my life
- Jesus is completely just and perfect with me
- He richly gives grace and righteousness to me.
- Jesus has lovely redeemed me through His blood.
- No matter what I do, He actively loves me every second of the day.
These are some hard realities to swallow when I want to be a self reliant human. But God’s grace is everything! It is what saves me, what sustains me and what redeems me.
Join us next week as we make the transition from knowing and understanding God’s grace to experiencing and accepting God’s grace so it can change who we are.