THE GRACE OF GOD
Titus 2:11, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men.”
In the New Testament the word “grace” comes from two Greek words: charis is used to denote ‘forgiveness,’ human as well as divine; eleos has the meaning of ‘mercy;’ this form is not used much and occurs largely in passages based in the Old Testament.
Grace involves subjects as forgiveness, salvation, regeneration, repentance and the love of God. In the Old Testament grace is looked at more in the form of mercy. The Old Testament prophetic writings had repentance as their chief point of interest while the Law was in sharp opposition to grace.
I. GRACE CAME BY JESUS CHRIST, John 1:17, “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”
A. The grace of God has appeared to all men, Titus 2:11, “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,”
B. The grace of God sent Jesus Christ to the Cross, Hebrews 2:9, But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
C. The grace of God causes man to be justified through Jesus Christ, Romans 3:24, “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” See also Romans 5:16-19.
II. GRACE WAS BEFORE THE LAW.
A. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord, Genesis 6:8, “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.”
1. Here we see grace relating to “mercy,” Genesis 39:21, “But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison.”
2. Here we see also the idea of “favor,” Proverbs 3:4, “So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man.”
B. Joseph finds “favor” in Potiphar’s sight, Genesis 39:4, “And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.”
III. GRACE IN THE NEW TESTAMENT, Ephesians 2:1-10.
A. The Prodigal Son was welcomed by his father in a way he did not deserve, Luke 15:20-24.
B. Repentance is stressed as a condition of salvation, Mark 1:15, “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.”
C. Faith is the human response to God’s grace, Ephesians 2:8, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:”
IV. THE BELIEVER’S POSITION IN GRACE EXPLAINED.
A. It is not by anything in himself, Titus 3:5, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”
B. It is by the will of God, Galatians 1:4, “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:”
1. God’s call to salvation checks human independence and self-righteousness, 2 Timothy 1:9, “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.”
2. It shows that in bestowing favor God is perfectly free, Ephesians 1:1-6.
3. It shows that every step in the process of the Christian life is due to God’s grace:
a. The call, Galatians 1:15, “But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace.”
b. Repentance, 2 Timothy 2:25, “In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;”
c. Faith, Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9-Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
There is a lot more to be said about the grace of God, however, we have touched on the basis of the doctrine. God’s grace is a marvelous thing in our lives and because He chose to save us should move us to win others to His marvelous grace also.