True Grace

Since we are commanded to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, I believe we need to study the scriptures concerning these two areas that we may understand and apply ourselves to the Word of God and the Holy Spirit.  The grace of God and the knowledge of Jesus Christ are two foundation stones that need to be firmly established in our life and walk with God.   So let’s spend the necessary time studying in each of these areas that we may lay a firm foundation.  I believe we should begin with grace, God’s grace.   Let’s look at what grace really is and how it applies to our lives.
The meaning of grace: The unmerited love and favor of God toward man; divine, supernatural influence acting in man to make him pure and morally strong.
So, grace is the presence of God’s favor extended to us because of His love for us.  This presence is divine, supernatural and unearned; it is Holy Spirit influence acting in us and ordering our lives to make us pure and morally strong.  Grace makes us Christ-like.
That is grace. It isn’t weak or cheap.  Grace isn’t a license to sin; it delivers us from sin.  The question is asked in Romans 6:1, Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?   That question was asked in Paul’s day and it needs to be asked in our day by every professing Christian.  The resounding answer to this question comes to us in Verse 2; God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer in it?
Some years ago, I heard a fellow say, I guess I’ve been wallowing in the grace of God, but I now realize I need to clean up my life and get right with God!   Maybe he didn’t know it, but he wasn’t “wallowing” in God’s grace, he was living in sin!   He was trying to use God’s grace as an excuse, a covering and a license to sin.
Born again believers don’t practice sin.  Sinners practice sin!   The Divine influence of God’s grace delivers us from sin and makes us pure.   Born again believers practice the righteousness of God.   Grace can’t be used to manipulate God, it is an attribute of God, and it’s path leads to life and absolute victory.  Grace is God’s strength in you, His all sufficiency in you, His ability in you.  It isn’t something you can work up.  Grace is imparted to you as you walk humbly and in obedience to His Word and His Holy Spirit.
Now, let’s study some other scriptures to get a better understanding of the various aspects of God’s divine, supernatural grace.
Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ, John 1:17.
We are saved by grace, Ephesians 2:5
We are justified by grace, Romans 3:24
We stand by grace, Romans 5:2
We are kept by grace, 2 Corinthians 12:9
We are to continue in grace, Acts 13:43
We are to be strong in grace, 2 Timothy 2:1,
2 Corinthians 12:9
We must continually approach the throne for grace, Hebrews 4:16
God is rich in grace, Ephesians 1:7
God gives grace to the humble, James 4:6
God’s grace builds us up, Acts 20:32
God’s grace keeps us from sin, Romans 6:1,2
Great grace is given to do great things for the Kingdom of God, Acts 4:33
We are to grow in His grace, 2 Peter 3:18
Volumes could be written about the grace of God, but I believe enough scriptures have been given that you can get a clear understanding of this great attribute of God.  Whether you are going through a time of testing and change, or desire to accomplish great things for the kingdom of God, His grace is sufficient for you.  From the moment you are saved until the day God calls you home, the all sufficiency, favor, ability and strength of God will always be available to you.
In 2 Corinthians, Chapter 11, Verse 23 through Verse 33, Paul tells about some of the great sufferings he had to endure for the sake of the gospel, and they were many!   In Chapter 12, Verse 7, he identifies the source of some of his troubles; a messenger of satan was sent to buffet him.  In Verse 8, Paul says, for this thing I sought the Lord three times, that it might depart from me.   Paul wanted relief from this onslaught of the devil against him, but because of the message of Christ and the abundance of revelations he received from God, this messenger was necessary.
God’s response to Paul was, My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness, Verse 9.
The Lord understood Paul’s troubles and was concerned for his welfare, but there was more at stake than Paul’s troubles.   Sometimes we believers only see “our will and our desires” and fail to see God’s plan.  The Lord had heard Paul’s prayer, but God’s answer was not what Paul asked for but it was what he needed!   “My grace is sufficient:” He was saying my ability, all sufficiency, favor and strength is made perfect in your weakness.  God knew what His divine influence would do in Paul in his time of weakness.   So, instead of changing the circumstance, God changed Paul!   Paul grew in grace.
Evidently, grace was imparted and seized!    Look at Verse 10.  Paul said, Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ sake; for when I am weak, then am I strong.  Notice the difference this greater measure of grace made in Paul’s life, because now, instead of continually pleading with the Lord to take away the problem, he glories in it!
In his time of distress, instead of giving up, Paul approached the throne and obtained mercy and found grace to help in time of need, Hebrews 4:16.  This is the grace of God that we are to grow in, but we must approach the throne of God to obtain it.  When God calls a person to accomplish a particular task for His kingdom, He always gives them the ability to complete it.   He gives them His grace!   As we stay humble before Him and continually seek Him, greater grace will be given that we can accomplish even greater things for the Kingdom of God.  
There is no shortage in God, for He is rich in grace, Ephesians 1:7.

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