Friday, 25 December 2015

Moving In Maximum Grace

The Definition Of Grace: unmerited favor, undeserved favor. More than we deserve, greater than we can imagine. The free and unmerited favor of God as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessing.


God’s best idea – it is His decision to ravage His people by love, to rescue passionately and restore justly. Jesus took the punishment for us, He is now offering us a chance for ultimate perfection and help us reach that goal.

Matthew 5:48 - Be you therefore, perfect, even as your father who is in Heaven is perfect.

To show appreciation of the grace given to you.

2 Peter 1:2 - Grace and peace be multiplied unto you, through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord.
Moving In Maximum Grace
1. Grace Transforms Us:
  • Ephesians 2: 8-9 - For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 
  • Matthew 4:19 - “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 
  • John 14:16 - I will ask the Father and He will give you another Helper, who will stay with you forever. He is the Spirit who reveals the truth about God. The world cannot receive Him, because it cannot see Him or know Him. But you know him because he remains with you and is in you.
  • Luke 9: 23 - And He said to them all, “Anyone who wants to come with me must forget self, take up their cross everyday and follow me.”
  • Titus 1:16 - They claim that they know God but their actions deny it. They are hateful and disobedient, not fit to do anything good.
Because Jesus has paid for our justice, He can now turn to us and say “follow me.”

2. Grace Helps Us... Romans 3:20 – 24 - Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.

1 John 3 : 2 – 3 - Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears,[a] we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.

2 Corinthians 12 : 9 - But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Grace is a constant energy source: It is not the light at the end of the tunnel but the light that moves us through the tunnel.


3. Grace is sufficient:
  • Luke 1:79 - But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

John 3: 17 - For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

John 1: 14 - The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

God; instead of telling us to change, He creates the change in us.

Do we clean up so that He can accept us? NO. He accepts us and begins cleaning us up.

Grace:


2 Peter 3:18 - But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever. Amen.

Salvation is God’s business.
Grace is God’s idea, His work and His expense.
God’s grace is more powerful than sin.
To whom does God give His grace.
Grace is a free gift.
It cannot be earned but neither can one automatically receive it.
Who then can receive grace?
Who can receive grace.

1. Those who have faith. Romans 5:1-2
2. Those who are humble. 1 Peter 5:5, James 4:6
3. Those who are forgiven. Ephesians 1:7
4. It is God who determines who will receive His grace. Romans 9:14-15

What then is our responsibility?

Christ died in our stead by paying the death penalty for us, and through His grace He forgave us. Acts 15:11

God, through His grace, gives us the blessing of having our sins forgiven and eventually receiving eternal life. But we now have to change direction in our walk of life, leaving behind our old and sinful ways of life.

What then is our responsibility?

We can never earn God’s grace, as Ephesians 2:8-9 points out: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

Grace and Faith
Faith is a positive response to what God has already provided by grace.
Grace and faith work together and they must be in balance.
Ephesians 2:8-9 - For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
Grace is what God does and faith is what we do.


GRACE AND MERCY

Hebrews 4:16 - What are mercy and grace?

We can find the words grace and mercy used in the same context and sometimes in the same sentence in the Bible. Do they mean the same thing? And if not, what is the difference?

The story of Jonah: Mercy is often tied to the concept of forgiveness. For instance, if you forgive someone who has wronged or hurt you, that’s would be an act of mercy.

Deuteronomy 4:30-31 - When you are in tribulation, and all these things come upon you in the latter days, you will return to the LORD your God and obey his voice. 31 For the LORD your God is a merciful God. He will not leave you or destroy you or forget the covenant with your fathers that he swore to them.

Numbers 14:17-19 - “Now may the Lord’s strength be displayed, just as you have declared: 18 ‘The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.’ 19 In accordance with your great love, forgive the sin of these people, just as you have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now.”

Proverbs 14:21 - Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner, but blessed is he who is generous to the poor.

Grace is something we all need, but we cannot earn it or give it to others. It comes only through the sacrifice of Christ. Mercy, though, is something we need at various points in our lives, and is something we are expected to show toward others.

Grace goes beyond mercy.

Mercy gave the prodigal son a second chance. Grace threw him a party.

Mercy prompted the Samaritan to bandage the wounds of the victim. Grace prompted him to pay for the victim's care.

Mercy forgave the thief on the cross. Grace escorted him into paradise.

GRACE DISTORTED: Does grace allow us to sin with no consequences for our disobedience?

“I am under grace not law” does this statement have any substance? Jude 4

Fall From Grace? How can one who received God’s gift of grace ever lose it?

The apostle Paul noted the following in Galatians 5:4 - “You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.”

(Galatians 5:1-2). Paul summarizes this discussion in Galatians 6 :13-14 - “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love. …

A warning by Paul: Paul explained that anyone could fall from grace—even he himself could! He was the apostle to the gentiles and was mightily used by God, yet he realized the potential for losing the condition of grace given to him from God. He explained this using the analogy of an athlete competing for a prize.

1 Corinthians 9:25-27 - Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize. Culled From Rutendo L. Nzira.


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