Friday, May 24, 2013


TODAY'S SPECIAL:  Romans 4:16-5:5

TO CHEW ON: "… our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand…" Romans 5:2

There is much theological meat in this part of Romans. But instead of taking a wide-angle view, today I want to focus on one little word: grace.

My dictionary devotes an inch and a half to grace definitions. Here are the theological ones: 1] The unmerited but freely given love and favour of God toward man. 2] The divine influence operating in man to regenerate, sanctify or strengthen him. 3] The state or condition of being pleasing and acceptable to God. 4] Any divinely inspired spiritual virtue or excellence."

Keeping these definitions in mind, let's probe what Paul is saying here about grace. As I read it, he declares that Jesus' death has made possible mankind's reconciliation with God. Through faith in Jesus this grace is our basis of assurance in this life ("this grace in which we stand") and hope of glory, in this life and the next ("and rejoice in hope of the glory of God").

I like how the J. B. Phillips New Testament paraphrases it:
"Since then it is by faith that we are justified, let us grasp the fact that we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have confidently entered into this new relationship of grace, and here we take our stand in happy certainty of the glorious things he has for us in the future" - Romans 5:1,2 - J. B. Phillips.

A sidebar article in my Bible points out how freeing is the result as we obey God, not to get His favor, but because we already have His favor. The writer goes on:
"Within His unconditional acceptance given us because of what Christ has done, we are freed from the need to monitor our behavior and loosed into the joy of knowing His friendship …. Grace underscores the generosity of God's love, highlighting the truth that God does not coerce change by threatening us, but instead he conquers by lavishing His love upon us" Steven Fry "The Grace of God," New Spirit-Filled Life Bible, p. 1556 (emphasis added).

What a great way of looking at obedience and living the Christian life!

An understanding of His love-lavishing ways can also give a new angle to our prayers for and relationships with the unsaved. Maybe we can be the feet and hands of His grace to them.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for Your unmerited favor to me in sending Jesus to take the penalty I deserved. Help me to grasp the truth of Your grace at a deep level, to live in it and to extend it to others. Amen.

MORE:  Food for thought

"Grace is indeed needed to turn a man into a saint, and he who doubts it does not know what a saint or a man is." Pascal

"Be faithful in the little practices of love which will build in you the life of holiness and make you Christlike." Mother Teresa


The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. - Used with permission.
Bible Drive-Thru

Bookmark and Share

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...