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Grace:  What can we learn about it in the Bible? 

Gary Googe Jul 19

What an important word this is! The Bible tells us some wonderful things about it. How is it used there?  The Greek word from which it comes in the Bible is CHARIS, speaking of a kindly disposition from which an act proceeds.  In many places it speaks of something that was given that was unearned or undeserved.  Such is the case with this first item we’ll note.

  1. We are said to be saved by GRACE.
Ephesians 2:8-9

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. [Emphasis added]

You wouldn’t think this is the case the way so many people talk about it.  To them they see their own personal works to be some part of the means by which it is gained.  But the Scripture that’s addressed TO US is so plain on this.  Here’s what our apostle Paul says about it.

Romans 4:4-5

4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. [Emphasis added]

But people who reject grace and the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ as the sole means to their salvation will also quote Scripture for you.

James 2:20

20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? [Emphasis added]

What these people fail to realize is that the book of James is not addressed to us today.  It was addressed to Israel in a former time when God required certain works as the way people were to express their faith for salvation.  

James 1:1

1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. [Emphasis added]

As Gentiles we are not of the twelve tribes of Israel, and we are not living in the time before the salvation and then the revelation that was introduced through the writings of the apostle Paul.  Therefore, salvation today occurs only when people put their faith solely in what Christ did for them through His death, burial, and resurrection.

1 Corinthians 15:1-4

1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;

2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.

3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: [Emphasis added]

Scripture gives us a complete explanation of what God did through Christ.  There He made full provision so that anyone can be saved.

2 Corinthians 5:21

21 For he [God the Father] hath made him [Jesus Christ] to be sin for us [having taken the punishment for all our sins on the cross of Calvary], who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. [Emphasis added]

Our own righteousness or goodness is not enough.  We must have His righteousness or goodness to be made right with God to be saved from everlasting punishment.  This leads us to our next fact about this.

  1. We are justified by GRACE.

To be justified is to be one who has received this perfect righteousness of God.  Here again, we didn’t do anything to merit it.  We gained it by grace through faith in Christ.  When that righteousness is applied to us, we are then said to be justified.  This means God credits us with His own perfect righteousness for our salvation.

Romans 3:24

24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption [Christ paying the full penalty due for our sins] that is in Christ Jesus: [Emphasis added]

It was this redemptive work of Christ that made this possible. 

Titus 3:7

7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. [Emphasis added]

The application of God’s grace to our lives is all we need for salvation and more.

  1. His GRACE is sufficient for us.

It will be there to meet our every need.  Not necessarily our wants, but our needs for us to be sustained in our service to God.

2 Corinthians 12:9

9 And he said unto me [the apostle Paul], My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. [Emphasis added]

This grace is speaking of His provision to sustain us.  It’ll always be just what He sees that it needs to be for us.  As believers we should all take comfort in that.  We need not worry about our circumstances whatever they may be.

  1. We are not under Law but under GRACE.

Israel was given a wonderful system of law that served to govern every aspect of their lives, but what we have today is far better.

Romans 6:14-15

14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. [Emphasis added]

Instead of being under a system of law that condemned us, we are said to be under God’s provision of grace.  We have been made free of that rigid system of dos and don’ts.  We are not to live lawlessly, but we’ve been set free from that system of law that governed the people of Israel.

Romans 6:1-2

1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?

2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin [no longer under its condemnation], live any longer therein? [Emphasis added]

Here he’s telling us that what Christ has done for each of us graciously through His death, burial, and resurrection should serve to motivate us to gladly work at living a life that would please Him.  As believers in Him we have come to be identified with His provision for our salvation.  This is all speaking of the dry baptism of Romans 6, the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  It is through this baptism that we have come to be identified [baptized] with Christ once and for all.  It is also through this baptism that we have come to be identified with that which is spoken of as the Body of Christ.  This “body” is made up of all believers of our time [during this which is spoken of as the Dispensation of Grace], having Christ as its Head.

1 Corinthians 12:13

13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. [Emphasis added]

It is this that is the “one baptism” God has instituted for our time.

Ephesians 4:5

5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, [Emphasis added]

None of this have any of us earned or deserved.  It is for this reason that a special title has been given to our time.

  1. This is now called the dispensation of GRACE.
Ephesians 3:2-3

2 If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: 

This dispensing of grace and this period of grace was a complete surprise to all.  It had formerly been a mystery, that is, a secret held in the mind of God until it was first disclosed through the apostle Paul.

3 How that by revelation he made known unto me [Paul] the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, [Emphasis added]

It is because of all this that there’s a special manner in which we should approach God when we pray.

  1. We are to approach the throne of GRACE in prayer
Hebrews 4:16

16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. [Emphasis added]

We can and should be bold in our approach to God when we pray.  He’s not going to answer our prayers because we earned it or deserve it.  So, there’s no reason to be hesitant or shy about it.  We can come boldly because of our intimate union with Christ. 


A whole lot of the process of spiritual growth centers around coming to a full understanding and appreciation for the grace God has shown us.  In our world today nearly everything centers around what we merit.  If we don’t somehow earn or deserve something, we don’t get it.  But that’s not how God treats us.  Everything centers around the merits of Christ, not ours.  This is a primary reason spiritual growth is such a challenge for us.  We are all the beneficiaries of God’s grace, and we should learn to think and act like it.  This process can be rightly called grace orientation.  Without a correct understanding of it we cannot grow spiritually.  All our works should be a manifestation of our understanding and appreciation for the grace of God that’s been extended to us.

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