“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our transgressions, according to the riches of His grace…for by grace you have been saved through faith, and this not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works, so that no one may boast.” (Ephesians 1:7, 2:8-9)

The grace of God is a rich and beautiful gift that Scripture reminds us of continually. It is vital that we understand the salvation we receive by merit not our own, because it is this very grace from God that distinguishes it as the true gospel of Jesus Christ. In the New Testament, we are reminded that it is God who seeks us, and it is Christ Jesus who died for our sins, affirming that it is by His mercy and grace we are saved. Romans 3:10-11 tells us the condition of all mankind apart from Christ, “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.” There are many who may believe they are deserving of grace because of their perceived measure of personal goodness. But Scripture reminds us that we are not good, and our righteousness is like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6).

If we continue along the Romans road, we find that all of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and for those who are in Christ Jesus, we are justified by His grace as a gift, through His redemption and propitiation by His blood. This is received by faith (Romans 3:23-24). “We know that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). The wonderful gift of eternal life is only attainable by the grace of God. As born-again believers, the things we are able to do for the glory of God are only by the grace of God (Romans 15:15-16).

Romans 5:8 assures us that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. For those in Christ, He has justified us with His blood, and we have been saved from the wrath of God (Romans 5:9). There is nothing we did that made us worthy enough or desirable enough for Christ to come and die for us. I don’t know about you, but I cannot fully comprehend the depth of God’s love, mercy, and grace towards me; but I believe that He died for my sins. I deserved judgment for my sin and rebellion against God, but He has made a way of reconciliation, and it is by grace through faith in Christ alone.

This should bring great peace and joy to our hearts and our souls. The God of heaven and earth sent His Son to die for us, and being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (Ephesians 2:4-5). By the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the Apostle Paul reminds us that it is by grace we are saved. The Christian life is encompassed in the grace of God. God’s grace is unmerited favor. Christ Jesus died in our place. Paul reminds those in Christ that God has set apart a remnant of Israel, chosen by grace. This grace is not dependent upon the works of man. Otherwise, it would not be grace (Romans 11:5-6).

We can see the grace of God in our coming before His throne of grace in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16). Thank the good Lord, our great High Priest, has provided a way for us to do so. It is at His throne we receive mercy and find grace, which is freely given because of Christ Jesus. We are encouraged, in the book of James, that God gives us more grace in our humility before Him. It is this grace that helps us to resist the devil. Second Peter 3:18 instructs believers to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. This is how we keep from falling into error and being led astray. As we can see, the grace of God is integral and essential in the life of a born-again believer.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is not something we “graduate” from in our lives. It is not a building block or a steppingstone. It is the foundation upon which our salvation rests, and to reject His grace for our atonement of sin is to reject Him altogether.

Galatians 1:6 brings a sobering message of not forsaking the grace of Christ for another gospel. When God’s grace is traded for personal works and merit, another gospel is believed, and it is a gospel that cannot save. There is only one work which saves us, and that is the finished work of Christ on the cross. This very grace, gifted to us by God, is what gives us faith to believe in God and His salvation. It is this very grace that chose us before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him (Ephesians 1:4). Paul reminds Timothy of God’s salvation and holy calling, which is solely based on His purpose and grace and not on our own works (2 Timothy 1:9). What glorious news this is for those who are in Christ Jesus!

The message of God’s grace is not reserved to the New Testament. His glorious gospel and His grace are seen all throughout Scripture. We can see God’s grace extended to Adam and Eve after their rebellion against God. We can see God’s grace on display in saving Noah and his family from the flood. We can see the grace of God upon the life of David as he defeated Goliath, and we can see God’s mercy and grace when David sinned against God. We see God’s grace in Israel’s continual sin and spiritual adultery against God.

Time and again, it is the grace of God on display in the confines of His Word, testifying of Christ and His eternal promises and salvation. I encourage you to read the Word and to see God’s grace at work from Genesis to Revelation. The Bible is centered upon Jesus Christ, and the gospel of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone is abundantly evident in both the Old and New Testament. Thank God for His grace. We need it daily, and because of God the Father’s mercy, God the Son’s atonement, and the Holy Spirit’s empowerment, we have His grace freely given to us.

Download December 2023 on Sola Gratia: The Essence of God's Unmerited Favor

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