How Grace Changes Everything

1 Timothy 1:12-17

12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service, 13 even though I was previously a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; 14 and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus. 15 It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost. 16 Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost sinner Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

Our lives are hopeless without God. We are born with a fleshly nature, and we continue to sin throughout life. The penalty for sin is death and eternal separation from God. No one is exempt from this biblical truth, and there’s nothing that we can do to change the situation. Enter God’s grace, His unmerited favor toward us.

Consider the apostle Paul, who persecuted anyone claiming the name of Jesus. He played a significant role in the violence aimed at Christians and, in his own words, was the “chief” of sinners (This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. 1 Tim. 1:15 KJV). Nothing he did deserved God’s tender concern. But God lovingly transformed him into a man who dedicated himself to sharing the gospel message. Paul’s life beautifully illustrates grace.

Salvation is possible only because of grace—we simply can’t do enough good deeds to earn our own way to heaven. The One who took the punishment for our sin deserves all credit for our redemption. And thankfully, there is no transgression too great for Him to forgive. We can’t add to His act of atonement; all we can do is receive this free gift. If we trust in Christ as Savior, God will save us, making us His children forever.

The Grace of God

A Broadcast with Steven Lawson

Christians often talk about the grace of God. But what is God’s grace? Today, Steven Lawson expounds on the depths of God’s mercy that lie at the heart of our salvation.

Undeserved Love

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”1

As humans, we often struggle to accept the fact that God loves us unconditionally. It is hard to understand how someone could love us even when we mess up. I have had this conversation with many people, and, more often than not, this is because we are stuck in the human “give and take” mindset when it comes to love. In many marriages, and relationships in general, you must “earn” love, acceptance, and time before it is given. If there are disagreements or disappointments in the relationship, this may affect how love is demonstrated.

While this concept of unconditional love may be difficult for us to grasp because of our human brokenness, this is the only kind of love God has towards us, His children. His love is not dependent on how “good” we are and will not change when we fail. Now, this doesn’t mean that we can go live ungodly lives and do whatever we want because God’s love is unconditional. We must remember that God cannot see sin, so if we choose to practice sin, we intentionally create a separation between ourselves and God and will reap the consequences of our actions. Does he still love us? Absolutely. However, it is our choice to receive that love and love Him in return. There a huge difference between choosing to live in sin and missing the mark on occasion. Our goal should always be to be like Jesus, but we are human and will make mistakes.

The important thing to remember in any situation is that God loves us no matter what. If we have strayed from His will, he awaits your return with arms wide open. No condemnation, just a loving Father ready to give you renewed life. If we fail, cling tight to God’s hand, get up and keep going. The more we accept and experience God’s love in our lives, the more we can put it into practice towards others.

Suggested prayer: Dear God, I have done nothing to deserve your love, yet you give it to me freely. Sometimes I condemn myself for the mistakes I make and drift from you believing I am unworthy. In these moments, help me remember that, in Jesus, I am loved, worthy, forgiven, and accepted. My mind can’t begin to comprehend the depths of your love, but I ask that you help me be a channel of your love to those around me. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

  1. Romans 5:8 (NLT).
  2. Comment at: http://www.actsweb.org/daily.php?id=2191

Saved by grace

Romans 5:1-11 Now that we have been made right with God by putting our trust in Him, we have peace with Him. It is because of what our Lord Jesus Christ did for us. By putting our trust in God, He has given us His loving-favor and has received us. We are happy for the hope we have of sharing the shining-greatness of God. We are glad for our troubles also. We know that troubles help us learn not to give up. When we have learned not to give up, it shows we have stood the test. When we have stood the test, it gives us hope. Hope never makes us ashamed because the love of God has come into our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who was given to us.

We were weak and could not help ourselves. Then Christ came at the right time and gave His life for all sinners. No one is willing to die for another person, but for a good man someone might be willing to die. But God showed His love to us. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Now that we have been saved from the punishment of sin by the blood of Christ, He will save us from God’s anger also. 10 We hated God. But we were saved from the punishment of sin by the death of Christ. He has brought us back to God and we will be saved by His life. 11 Not only that, we give thanks to God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have been brought back to God.

Scripture can paint a grim picture of mankind. We’re spiritually dead in our sins, alienated from God, and objects of His wrath. Can you imagine a scarier situation to be in? But there’s hope for us through faith in Jesus. God opens our eyes to our hopeless condition so we can turn to His Son in repentance and receive the riches of His salvation.

By God’s grace, we’ve been reconciled to Him. On the cross, Jesus bore the Father’s wrath for our sins so we could be forgiven and declared righteous. Now instead of being His enemies, we’re His beloved children. He made us spiritually alive by giving us a new nature created in righteousness and holiness. And now His love has been poured out in our hearts, and we have the sure hope of the glory of heaven.

Knowing how amazing God’s grace is, we should respond with gratitude, praise, and wholehearted devotion. In addition, today’s passage tells us to rejoice not only in God and our hope of glory but also in our troubles. That’s because He graciously uses difficulties to make us like Christ and increase our confidence in His love.

Quotes About Grace: 15 Magnificent Quotes to Lift Your Spirit

https://churchleaders.com/pastors/preaching-teaching/176582-grace-quotes-15-magnificient-quotes-to-help-preach-god-s-grace.html

The Grace to Overcome

Hebrews 4:14-16 14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let’s hold firmly to our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things just as we are, yet without sin. 16 Therefore let’s approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace for help at the time of our need.

The Lord said that though adversity is part of earthly life, He has overcome the world (I have told you these things so you may have peace in Me. In the world you will have much trouble. But take hope! I have power over the world!” John 16:33). And because of God’s abundant goodness, kindness, and love for His children, we don’t have to feel discouraged or walk away from His plan.

We’ll know His divine grace divine grace is working in us when we have …

Strength to persevere. Through the Holy Spirit, God releases His power into us so we might endure (“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes into your life. You will tell about Me in the city of Jerusalem and over all the countries of Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8).

A spirit of confidence. The Lord understands our troubles and urges us to approach Him boldly for help (Heb. 4:15-16 above).

A sense of His presence. When grace is at work, we will be conscious of the Spirit’s abiding support.

A focus on God. With divine help, we can shift our attention from our situation to God.

Trust that God will bring us through—and not just barely but with deeper intimacy and greater faith at the end.

Assurance of God’s sovereignty. We trust that He’s in control of our trials and will provide all we need in order to endure (You have never been tempted to sin in any different way than other people. God is faithful. He will not allow you to be tempted more than you can take. But when you are tempted, He will make a way for you to keep from falling into sin. 1 Corinthians 10:13).

Paul had been through shipwrecks, imprisonments, and beatings—difficulties far worse than most of ours. He didn’t quit because he drew on God’s grace and found it sufficient for every circumstance. Where do you need some grace in order not to give up and walk away?

God’s Grace Is Sufficient

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.

We worship a God of grace and mercy as well as a God of justice and truth. Today’s passage is one of my favorites – reminding us that God’s grace is sufficient to cover our sins and when we are weak – God will make us strong through His strength which has no limits. God’s grace is sufficient – God’s grace is all we need.

Think with me today about areas in our faith walk or in our life in general where we find ourselves weak. Do we have trouble with a sailor’s mouth – or fighting old habits as we strive to clean up our language – in a desire to reflect better on the Lord we represent? God’s grace can forgive us – so let’s not beat ourselves up – and don’t let Satan do it either. What we need to do is confess when we fail/sin – strive to do better/turn away from the sin – sincerely – and God’s grace will cover our failure and sin.

Do we struggle with lust – thinking thoughts we know are not worthy of a child of God? Looking at pictures in magazines or on the internet we know we shouldn’t? Don’t allow Satan or ourselves to hammer our failures into our head and heart. Confess – repent – turn from our sin and seek God’s grace to cover our sin. I’m not excusing our sin nor am I trying to rationalize that God has already covered them – rather that our sins are forgiven when we go to God with them. If He forgives them – we should not carry them anymore! We should forgive ourselves and move on to maturity in Christ.

Finish at: https://raymcdonald.wordpress.com/2020/07/13/gods-grace-is-sufficient-2/

Grace in James, John, and Jude

A Broadcast with Steven Lawson

The doctrines of grace were so universally known by the early church that these truths are sometimes mentioned simply in passing by the Apostles. Today, Steven Lawson examines how the sovereign mercy God lines the letters of James, John, and Jude.

A Sermon of Grace – podcast

A Broadcast with Steven Lawson

True believers cannot finally drift away from the Lord Jesus Christ. Today, Steven Lawson comes to the book of Hebrews to reveal that God’s chosen people are forever anchored to the throne of grace.

Are Grace and Works Compatible?

https://www.crossway.org/articles/are-grace-and-works-compatible/