18th January 2011

G.R.A.C.E.

God’s Revelation Actually Concerns Everyone

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”
Ephesians 2:8-9 (NIV)

How wonderful when we, as Christians, come to understand God’s grace!

This understanding takes away the stress and pressure that we sometimes place on ourselves. It makes us relaxed and joyful Christians who can focus outward, not inward. God’s grace means it all depends on what Christ has done for us, not on what we can or cannot do for ourselves.

We cannot earn salvation, but the good news is—we don’t have to because Christ has earned it for us. All we have to do is accept what Christ has done for us, and be deeply grateful for it.

But we must also be careful. We must not let the latent vanity in our human nature allow us to start thinking we are superior to others as a result—that God’s grace is exclusive to us and this knowledge makes us better than either other Christians who have not yet grasped the concept of grace, or non-Christians who have no concept of it at all. A true understanding of grace should not lead to pride, but rather to a deep awe and reverence for God. Especially when we realise that God’s grace applies to all humanity, not just to those who are Christians today. God’s revelation actually concerns everyone, even if they don’t know it yet.

Jesus Christ died for us while we were still sinners (Romans 5.8). He died for every human being alive today, or who has ever lived, or will ever live, and not just for those of us who call ourselves Christians today. That realisation should both humble us and make us deeply grateful that God loves us, cares for us, and is interested in us as individuals. It should also make us look forward to the day when Christ returns and every human being comes to know and understand Grace.

The full understanding of Grace brings alive 2 Peter 3.9, where we read, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” How wonderful that God is concerned for every human being.

Do we share that concern and care for every human being we come into contact with?

Or do we get hung up on another person’s appearance, background, education or race, and fall into the trap of judging them as being less important or less worthy in some way than ourselves? Just as God’s grace is open to all and concerns all, let us try to have hearts and minds that are open to all we meet on our walk through life.

Prayer
Wonderful Father, help us to understand the incredible blessing of grace and to try and reflect it in all our relationships with people, both those we love and find it easy to get along with, and those who test and try us for whatever reason.
Amen

Study by Keith Hartrick 

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