The Grace of God
3Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
4And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
5By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:
6Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:
It is common knowledge that most professing Christians believe we are saved by grace defined as pardon ONLY. The definitions of grace as provided in this document, demonstrate the uncommonly known knowledge that grace is also the Holy Spirit power of Jesus Christ, by which we may overcome every besetting sin, just as Christ did. Foolish virgin professing “christians” don’t seem to desire this knowledge, for they love their sins more than they love Jesus. They teach a false gospel of grace as pardon only, to appease their conscience. But what will they do in the end thereof?
When Paul says we are saved by grace and not of works, lest any man should boast, he means grace as power as well as pardon. Is there Bible proof of this? Yes! All of the following Bible verses by Paul (and Peter) prove “the rest of the story” as to what Paul means by being saved by grace and not of works lest any man should boast:
1Cr 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
1Th 4:3 For this is the will of God, [even] your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:
1Th 4:4 That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour;
2Th 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
1Pe 1:2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.
Hbr 5:9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
Salvation is not of works because no man can keep the commandments of God because of 4,000 years of degradation in sin. But the Spirit of Christ can indwell us if we consent, and it is He who keeps the commandments in and through us, and then imputes His obedience to our account, just as He did in the case of Abraham. So we cannot boast of works we cannot do on our own power, for our own strength is insufficient to perform the works required of the law. And we cannot boast of the works that Christ does within us when we are in Him and He is in us.—rwb
“They must have His grace, the Spirit of Christ, to help their infirmities, or they cannot form a Christian character. Jesus loves to have us come to Him, just as we are—sinful, helpless, dependent.” Faith and Works, p. 38.
How many professing Christians, when asked for their definition of grace, would answer that grace is the Spirit of Christ?
“There must be a power working from within, a new life from above, before man can be changed from sin to holiness. That power is Christ. His grace [the Spirit of Christ] alone can quicken the lifeless faculties of the soul, and attract it to God, to holiness.” (ST, May 28, 1902, par. 3).
By Mrs. E. G. White.
“The grace of God is the chief theme of the Gospel. God's grace is the manifestation of His love—a love that makes it possible, thru Christ, for fallen man to be saved, makes possible the union and cooperation of humanity with divinity.
Not because we first loved Him did Christ love us; but "while we were yet sinners," He died for us. He does not treat us according to our desert. Altho our sins have merited condemnation, He does not condemn us. Year after year He has borne with our weakness and ignorance, with our ingratitude and waywardness; notwithstanding our wanderings, our hardness of heart, our neglect of His Holy word, His hand is stretched out still.
At what infinite cost to the Father and to the Son was the merciful, wondrous provision made for our redemption! Christ stepped down from His high estate as Commander in the heavenly courts; and laying aside His royal robe and kingly crown, clothed his divinity with humanity, and came to this earth, that He might dwell with us and give to men and women grace to overcome as He overcame. The disobedience of Adam in believing the falsehood of Satan cost the life of the Son of God; but notwithstanding the great and immeasurable cost, the love and goodness of God shine forth brighter than even at the first creation. "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound."
The Lord God thru Jesus Christ holds out His hand all the day long in invitation to the sinful and the fallen. He will receive all. He welcomes all. It is His glory to pardon the chief of sinners. He will take the prey from the mighty; He will deliver the captive; He will pluck the brand from the burning; He will lower the golden chain of His mercy to the lowest depths of human wretchedness and woe, and lift up the debased soul defiled with sin.
Every human being is the object of loving interest to Him who gave His life that He might bring men back to God. Souls guilty and helpless, liable to be destroyed by the arts and snares of Satan, are cared for as a shepherd cares for the sheep of his flock.
The Saviour's example is to be the standard of our service for the tempted and the erring. The same interest and tenderness and long-suffering that He has manifested toward us, we are to manifest toward others. "As I have loved you," He says, "that ye also love one another." If Christ dwells in us, we shall reveal His unselfish love toward all with whom we have to do. As we see men and women in need of sympathy and help, we shall not ask, "Are they worthy?" but "How can I benefit them?"
The wonderful example of the life of Christ, the matchless tenderness with which He entered into the feelings of the oppressed, His joy over those who rejoiced in His love, can not fail to have a deep influence upon the character of all who follow Him in sincerity. Learning of Him, they will give their sympathy, not grudgingly, but liberally; by kindly words and acts they will try to make the path easy for weary feet. By the grace of God revealed in human kindness and love, many things that appear formidable will be overcome. Self-renunciation will be the law of the life.
It is Christ's desire that His children shall reach this place. He longs to reveal thru them the treasure of His grace. He says to them, "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." And He says this because He knows that it is possible for them to reach perfection. The life that He lived in this world, they can live. He met the foe single-handed, as they must meet him. He asked for and received power to enable Him to overcome in conflict. And those who walk in God's way have the same power. The same angels that ministered to Christ minister to those also who shall be heirs of salvation.
It is our own character and experience that determine our influence upon others. In order to convince others of the power of Christ's grace, we must know its power in our own hearts and lives. The Gospel we present for the saving of souls must be the Gospel by which our own souls are saved. Only thru a living faith in Christ as a personal Saviour is it possible to make our influence felt in a skeptical world. If we would draw sinners out of the swift-running current, our own feet must be firmly set on the Rock, Christ Jesus.
The badge of Christianity is not an outward sign, not the wearing of a cross or a crown, but it is that which reveals the union of man with God. By the power of His grace manifested in the transformation of character the world is to be convinced that God has sent His Son as its Redeemer. No other influence that can surround the human soul has such power as the influence of an unselfish life. The strongest argument in favor of the Gospel is a loving and lovable Christian.
To every one who becomes a partaker of His grace, the Lord appoints a work for others; and the grace of God in all its fulness and efficiency is promised to those who engage in His service. The love that is bestowed by the Holy One is to be manifested by them to others. As we study the life of Christ, talk of Him, become more and more able to behold Him; as we avail ourselves of His grace, and receive the blessings He proffers us, we shall have something with which to help others. That which is good in the world will be stronger for our words and our presence, while evil will be made to appear as it is.” End of Article