From the Florida College Lecture, 2012 – The Grace of God
We really need two basic things: Forgiveness and Transformation. Sinners need some means outside themselves (since pardon cannot be self-conferred), to be relieved of the guilt of their sin. Then sinners also need information with motivation that provides transformation (to walk in newness of life after baptism; see Romans 6). God provides both for us through Jesus, “who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.”
A man said to a preacher one time, “why are you people always talking about the death of Christ.” He said, “why not talk about His life. Talk about His teaching and His great Example. Why all this interest in His death. Just give us His example and teaching. That’s what we need!”
The preacher said, “really? That’s all you need. You will follow Him and be a Christian, without all this morbid death history?” The man said, “yes, that’s it.”
“All right,” the preacher said, “let’s take the first step. The first thing you need to know about Jesus is that He never sinned. Can you do that?”
“Of course not,” the man replied; “I sin every day.” The preacher said, “sounds to me like you not only need an example and teaching – you need a Savior! Then the preacher quoted John 1:29. “Behold, the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
He is the author of eternal salvation to all who will obey Him (Heb. 5:9). And you can obey Him and have eternal salvation because “…we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowed with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone,” (Heb. 2:9).
What in your life can be traced back to the grace of God?
Everything good (Acts 17:25; Jas. 1:17; 1 Cor. 15:10; Rom. 8:32). We display the
grace of God, not by continuing in sin, but by continuing in obedience to God
(Rom. 5:21-6:18). In fact, apostles were divinely chosen and empowered by the
Spirit to tell the world of God’s grace “for obedience to the faith,” (Rom.
God loves for us to cheerfully reflect His grace through our giving to others, of all we have to give (Rom. 12:3,6; 1 Pet. 4:10).
Grace, Mercy and Peace to you – from God the Father, and Jesus Christ, our Lord.
By Warren Berkley
From Expository Files 19.2 February 2012