Everyone Is Covered By Grace
There is a philosophy going around that everyone is covered by grace, and that is just not true. If you have not accepted Gods gift of salvation you are not covered by grace and you will go to hell at the end of your life. People often believe that because God loves everyone, He could never send anyone to hell and in a sense that is true, but what they dont tell you is that it is not God who sends you to hell, but your choices send you there.
God gives everyone free will to choose Him and go to heaven or not chose Him and go to hell. We are the ones who make that choice. God has set laws in place and consequences for breaking them. He also set forgiveness and grace in place for those who choose it.
If you have never asked Jesus to forgive you of your sins and come into your heart to stay, then NOW is the time. If you dont know what to say, you can go to a Christian friend or pastor and ask them, or you can say this little prayer:
Jesus, I recognize that you are the Son of God and that you sacrificed Your life on the cross, so that I may be forgiven of my sins, live a life holy to you and one day go to heaven. I ask you to forgive me of my sins and cleanse my heart. I choose to live for you, and I love you with all my heart, please come in and stay with me forever. Amen
What Is Grace: Christian Quotes About Grace
Grace is free sovereign favor to the ill-deserving.
Grace is love that cares and stoops and rescues.
is God reaching downward to people who are in rebellion against Him.
Grace is unconditional love toward a person who does not deserve it.
“Grace is God’s best idea. His decision to ravage a people by love, to rescue passionately, and to restore justly – what rivals it? Of all his wondrous works, grace, in my estimation, is the magnum opus.”
“The five means of grace are prayer, searching the Scriptures, the Lord’s Supper, fasting, and Christian .”
Grace is most needed and best understood in the midst of sin, suffering, and brokenness. We live in a world of earning, deserving, and merit, and these result in judgment. That is why everyone wants and needs grace. Judgment kills. Only grace makes us alive.
A shorthand for what grace is – mercy, not merit. Grace is the opposite of karma, which is all about getting what you deserve. Grace is getting what you dont deserve, and not getting what you do deserve. Christianity teaches that what we deserve is death with no hope of resurrection.
While everyone desperately needs it, grace is not about us. Grace is fundamentally a word about God: his un-coerced initiative and pervasive, extravagant demonstrations of care and favor. Michael Horton writes, In grace, God gives nothing less than Himself. Grace, then, is not a third thing or substance mediating between God and sinners, but is Jesus Christ in redeeming action.
It’s Important To Also Remember That The Meaning Of Spiritual Grace Does Not Mean It Will Always Be Mutual
There are people who have received grace from others but have no mercy on others.
In order to forgive those who lack a sense of grace, you must first understand that not everyone thinks and feels the same way as you do. Grace is a choice that not everyone decides to practice.
With that being said, this doesnt mean that having grace doesnt matter. The point of practicing grace is not to force others to have grace as well.
Its a decision that someone makes based off of their own morals and standards for themselves.
When someone shows us a lack of grace, it has nothing to do with what we did. No matter what you do, you will never be able to control anything or anybody outside yourself.
The best thing to do is to remain true to your pact to be a graceful person to everyone .
Its also important to know how to forgive people who lack grace. Everyone is human and we can hold them accountable for their actions but also forgive them for what they did.
Forgiveness is often misconstrued as validating a persons terrible behavior when in actuality it does the opposite.
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Grace In The Story Of Hannah
The aforementioned word hanan is where the popular Hebrew name Hannah came from. Hannah was the mother of the prophet Samuel. The story of Hannah is like her namesake full of Gods grace and mercy.
Hard pressed and bitterly provoked every day, Hannah cried out to God in her despair. She prayed for a miracle and the Lord answered. The miracle is personified in the birth of her son, Samuel, and following children. We see her relief and rejoicing recorded in 1 Samuel 2. Notice her vindication, the Lord hearing her prayer, after He took note of her suffering, and showed her grace and favor in her time of need:
He raises up the poor from the dust he lifts the needy from the ash heap
to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the LORDs, and on them he has set the world.
The Mercy And Grace Of God
Exodus 35:6-7 gives another glimpse of grace and mercy in action. This verse connects perfectly to our earlier scripture Psalm 145:8-9.
The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the childrens children, to the third and the fourth generation.
The word for merciful here is rachum which encompasses compassion, mercy and forgiveness. And the word for gracious is hanun, originating from the same root as hanan. In Hebrew, these two words together read like poetry: Adonai, Adonai, rachum vhanun slow to anger, abounding in loving-kindness and truth.
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The Hebrew Word For Defining Grace
Lets start at the beginning. The first use of the word grace in the Bible is found in Genesis 6:8: But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.
The Hebrew word used here to define grace is indeed hen. Its derivative, hanan , is often translated as to be gracious or have mercy . In Psalm 6:2, the Psalmist says,
Be gracious to me, O LORD, for I am languishing heal me, O LORD, for my bones are troubled.
However, for example in Proverbs 17:8, the same word hen, is translated as precious, something of beauty and value: A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that hath it .
You have probably heard grace defined as unmerited favor. And in the Bible, it is often paired with another great word, mercy, which of course, has a different Hebrew equivalent. So, whats the difference? And in what way is each one of them unique? Lets look to the Bible for answers.
Grace Definition: Gods Action
Grace is the Hebrew word chanan or the Greek word charis, meaning the state of kindness and favor toward someone, often with a focus on a benefit given to the object. .
Grace is what God does because he is gracious. Every action of God toward us involves his grace. His creation, his providence, his conviction of the sinner, his gift of salvation, his equipping of the saints, and the future he has prepared for us. All of this is due to God’s grace.
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Paul’s Greeting Of ‘grace And Peace’
Today our written communications with other people are so hurried, so instant , that we rarely if ever deeply consider our words impact and meaning. But personal communications werent always this way. Writers in early times often put a great deal of thought into the words they used.
The Bible is filled with many such examples. A particularly notable one is the greeting the apostle Paul uses in each of his letters to church congregations preserved for us in the Bible: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul uses this same greeting in the first few verses of each of his letters to the churches, and he uses the same or a very similar greeting when writing to individuals such as Timothy and Titus.
What did Paul mean by this greeting? Since he uses these same words in each of the letters that bears his name, we should pay close attention to themand what they meant to Paul as well as to his immediate audience.
While Pauls words are similar to the common greeting used in letters among Greek speakers and writers of his day, he had actually coined a new phrase that was infused with deep meaning. With a minor tweak to common wording, and some key expansions, he conveyed some great spiritual truths that hold profound significance for Christians 2,000 years ago as well as today. Lets examine these more closely.
Draw Near With Confidence
So, let me end with a precious verse that we all know and love and maybe have never thought about in this term of grace. Hebrews 4:16: Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace. Thats a throne with the quality and the character and the inclination to treat people better than they deserve. Thats the kind of throne were coming to. But then it says, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Or a more literal translation: that we may find mercy and grace for a well-timed help.
It is incredibly encouraging that Gods grace is both the inclination of the divine heart to treat us better than we deserve and is the extension of that inclination in practical help.
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Calvin And Reformed Theology
Calvin and Luther believed free will does not co-operate with God’s grace which, according to them, cannot be rejected . The Lutheran Augsburg Confession says of baptism, “Lutherans teach that it is necessary to salvation and that by baptism the grace of God is offered and that children are to be baptized, who by baptism, being offered to God, are received into God’s favor.” The French reformer John Calvin expanded and further developed these themes in his systematic Institutes of the Christian Religion in 1536.
The notion that God has foreordained who will be saved is generally called predestination. The concept of predestination peculiar to Calvinism, “double-predestination“, is the most controversial expression of the doctrine. According to Reformed theology, the “good news” of the gospel of Christ is that God has freely granted the gift of salvation to those the Holy Spirit causes to believe what he freely grants to some , he withholds from others .
The relatively radical positions of Reformed theology provoked a strong reaction from both Roman Catholics and Lutherans.
Grace Cannot Be Earned And Is Not Deserved
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. ~Ephesians 2:8-9
But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works otherwise grace would no longer be grace. ~Romans 11:6
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ~Romans 5:8
And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. ~John 1:16
Who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began, ~2nd Timothy 1:9
Grace Can Be Withdrawn
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. ~Titus 2:11-14
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. ~Romans 6:1-4
For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose. ~Galatians 2:19-21
Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them. ~Hebrews 13:19
Gods Grace Trains Us Who Are Saved To Be Zealous For Good Deeds
Good deeds refer to deeds that are done out of sincere love for God and others in obedience to His Word. Zealous is a word that Paul used to describe his fanatical zeal for Judaism prior to his conversion . It was also used to describe the fanatical Jewish sect that was devoted to ridding Israel of Roman domination. The Zealots were totally devoted to their cause, even to the point of risking their own lives to achieve their goals. You would not call them lukewarm!
Could you rightly describe yourself as a fanatic for good deeds? It seems to me that the vast majority of Christians dabble at good deeds when it is convenient, when they dont have anything else that theyd rather do. But if we have been bought out of the slave market of sin by the blood of our great God and Savior, we should be fanatics for good deeds. We ought to be totally devoted to serving our new Master.
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Luther And Lutheran Theology
‘s posting of his ninety-five theses to the church door in Wittenberg in 1517 was a direct consequence of the perfunctory sacramentalism and treasury doctrines of the medieval church. The act was precipitated by the arrival of Johann Tetzel, authorized by the Vatican to sell indulgences.
The effectiveness of these indulgences was predicated on the doctrine of the treasury of grace proclaimed by Pope Clement VI. The theory was that merit earned by acts of piety could augment the believer’s store of sanctifying grace. Gifts to the Church were acts of piety. The Church, moreover, had a treasury full of grace above and beyond what was needed to get its faithful into heaven. The Church was willing to part with some of its surplus in exchange for earthly gold. Martin Luther’s anger against this practice, which seemed to him to involve the purchase of salvation, began a swing of the pendulum back towards the Pauline vision of grace, as opposed to James’s.
Luther taught that men were helpless and without a plea before God’s justice, and their acts of piety were utterly inadequate before his infinite holiness. Were God only just, and not merciful, everyone would go to hell, because everyone, even the best of us, deserves to go to hell. Our inability to achieve salvation by our own effort suggests that even our best intention is somehow tainted by our sinful nature. This doctrine is sometimes called total depravity, a term derived from Calvinism and its relatives.
What Is A Life Of Gratitude
A life of gratitude is a life that seeks to do Gods will. Galatians 2:20 says, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. It is recognizing that our bodies are now inhabited by the Holy Spirt. We are no longer flying solo, but rather we are the co-pilotas in second in command instead of first.
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From God Our Father And The Lord Jesus Christ
In Pauls repeated greeting we see that the source of true grace and peace is both God the Father and God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Both are the source of divine grace and peace.
Unlike greetings in that day sent in the names of the pagan gods and goddesses, Paul sent Christian believers greetings of grace to you and peace from the true God, the one source of true grace and peace. Paul pointed them to the grace and peace available through God the Father and Jesus Christ.
As Professor Fee notes in his commentary on Philippians 1:2: In a profound sense this greeting therefore nicely represents Pauls larger theological perspective. The sum total of Gods activity toward his human creatures is found in the word grace God has given himself to his people bountifully and mercifully in Christ.