Note, Quotation marks and a * at the end of sentence means bible quote or quote.
The Many Sides of Grace
Grace is a subject that has fascinated me from my first knowledge of God, actually I am some how driven to it like a lost treasure, to know its mysteries, secrets and whereabouts.
To some it is just a word; to me it is a treasure chest of fine gold, ruby and diamonds,
A rare tapestry weaved with expensive yarn of brilliant colors, transforming fabric piece by piece into a visual and emotional warm design.
A masterpiece of art, variegated with sweeps of pastels revealing outstanding work of a creative craftsman.
A symphony of instruments, conducted by a composer’s inner heart extending sounds of peace and tranquility.
Grace is beyond knowledge or imagination, that if we could capture and understand its essence, I believe we could experience the fragrance of God and His fullness.
Grace is the pivotal point of everything that God is concerning our relationship to Him.
It is the heart of His power that enables this earth to function and strengthens humanity to stand in times of trouble.
It is the security of knowing, without doubt, that He will never leave us nor forsake this world.
I believe to comprehend grace is to know God, His motivation and unconditional love, a creative power that motivated Him to give a lost world the very foundation of faith through a Son, the essence of all that we are.
Grace is a perfect holy righteous God, who comes to imperfect helpless humans and say’s, “I desire to have fellowship with you, to show you your blessed, that I have taken you out of guilt and shame, have raised you to a place of dignity and self-worth, that I am your God and accept you as my child unconditionally with all rights and privileges.”
Grace has been defined as God's unmerited favor or God's riches at Christ's expense. But I believe it is the infinite, limitless, eternal, unconditional, unlimited love of God expressed towards a world that does not deserve it! Purely uncompromising unconditional favor and kindness to all, a grace of many sides, a grace of great treasure!
Why would we not want to find this great treasure?
My prayer is a quote from the bible, "That He may grant us a spirit of wisdom and revelation, of insight into the mysteries and secrets, in the deep intimate knowledge of Him. By having the eyes of our heart flooded with light, so that we can know and understand the hope to which He has called us and how rich is His glorious inheritance. And that we can know and understand what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us, as demonstrated in the working of His might strength, grace.
In this writing I want to present you a view of this great treasure, the many sides or aspects of how grace is a part of your life, even if you do not know it.
Sadly many only know a side of grace as salvation, or as a name of a person or as a prayer over a meal.
To try to simplify it is a task in itself; the subject is infinite when trying to understand God and His grace. I simply can do no justice to knowledge that only God can give true revelation and enlightenment, but I will endeavor and hope beyond expectations that what you capture in these pages, may bring intimate understanding with an incredible loving caring God.
To start I want to give an analogy to the many sides of grace, I liken it to a motor in a car. When I look at a motor I see only a motor because I will admit I am not mechanically inclined.
Now I had a friend who was a mechanic and when he looked at a motor he seen different parts, components and applications. To me it was just a motor to get my car from one destination to another; to him it was the heart that drives of the automobile. I saw one thing and he seen many things!
For most grace is just grace, a word they simply see like I see a motor and leave it at that. Yet I must say for some reason when it comes to grace I see treasure, a treasure that takes many forms, different applications for many components and by this I desire to know all I can because I am convinced it will help me to understand the heart of God, which is true wealth.
I believe beyond doubt that grace needs to be understood in all its applications, and I believe it is vital to have this knowledge with understanding, because the results of knowing grace will be a people that will understand the true and living God.
To have grace operating in its fullness will bring the power and mind of God into every situation and cause us to stand firm, especially in the troubled times that are coming.
I pray that as you ponder these pages you will be infused in the inner man to walk out the fullness of life in grace, and that you may come to know the incredible love of the God towards you and comprehend the simplicity of this great treasure.
The Free Salvation of Grace
The subject of free grace is so vast that it's near to impossible to articulate it in this short writing. Yet if there was ever a message that is needed to be understood, it is free grace. Mans eternal destiny has been totally dependent on free grace, which is the one and only provision for the salvation of all humanity.
Grace is the way God thinks and the principles in which He operates towards us. He simply is grace and is motivated by grace.
The bible proclaims, "But God-so rich in his mercy, because of, and in order to satisfy the great and wonderful and intense love with which He loved us. Even when we were dead by our own shortcomings and trespasses, He made us alive together in fellowship and in union with Himself. He gave us the very life of Himself, the same new life in which He quickened Him, for it is by grace that you are saved delivered from judgment and made partakers of His salvation.”*
These words exemplify the fact that God is a God of all grace. A God of mercy, a God of infinite love! But it also reveals the condition of humanity, dead in their trespasses, a condition of total depravity,
Yet, because of this condition God responded with grace through the sacrifice and death of His Son on the cross. In turn making all humanity alive and in union with Himself!
“He did it not because of anything of merit that we have done, but because of and to further His own purpose and grace (unmerited favor) which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began eternal ages ago.”*
Simply this grace was given out side of us or before the beginning of time. Its excitants are independent of us, free unmerited favor towards us who do not deserve it or could ever earn it by our goodness or works. Simply it was all of God and God alone given to us before us!
For a short moment Let us look at a biblical example on how to help us understanding free grace, and that is the difference between the Law and grace.
Now when I talk about the Law, we are speaking of a series of covenants given to the Jews of the Old Testament, yes they were an act of divine grace, arrangements initiated by God out of his spontaneous mercy. But they were Laws of conditions. Also remember they were Laws never given to anyone else on planet earth but the Jews.
Their law proclaimed that God would bless or give favor on condition of their good works or performance. In other words it was conditioned on someone or something; the blessings were not free but payment for their works.
Yet today by free grace, favor and blessings are given to all solely on the works and effort and performance of God alone. Simply God through His Son paid the payment, in order to give us free, His blessing, this means we are no longer under the law, this is grace!
The Law said they must perform in order to be blessed. Grace says we are blessed, so now we can perform. Our performance is now in Him and motivated by His free grace!
The Bible says, "Now to him who works, the wages are not counted as grace but as debt." Simply, if we could earn grace by our good works or efforts, then it could no longer be grace.”
As we read more, "but if it is by grace His unmerited favor and graciousness, it is no longer conditioned on works or anything men have done. Otherwise, grace would no longer be grace, it would be meaning-less."*
"For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the free gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast."
Simply, grace is and was manifested in the work of the cross! The only act compatible with grace is faith, not works.
"Then what becomes of our pride and our boasting? It is excluded, banished, ruled out entirely, on what principle, on the principle of doing good works? No, but on the principle of faith."*
Well, is not my faith or my works? No, even the faith we receive is given by God, "... to those who have received, obtained an equal privilege of like precious faith through the righteousness of God..."*
Simply, faith is set forth as an act that is not treated as a work, as said in the previous words.
The bible goes on to say, "But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness."*
In other words, God's free grace is appropriated by the merit less act of faith. Simply, salvation of humanity is based on His grace, and extended on the principle of faith, which eliminates our boasting. This in turn directs all the honor and glory to God and God alone and His free grace.
Humanities pride has no place in grace. God is all of free grace and as a people we are now justified and live under grace!
"All are justified and made upright and in right standing with God, freely and gratuitously by His grace.”
Grace could not extend the full redemption plan without the suffering of God’s own Son. The Son became the substitute and took humanities place of punishment.
The grace that is so free today was very costly. The cost was the shed blood of God’s Son. In this, man's works or self-effort cannot compromise free grace.
For people to think that performance is that which obtains Gods blessings of free grace, is to make their accomplishments greater than God's, and this is to fall from the working of grace. But if it is by His free grace, then it is only God who can boast!
So come to the throne of grace and draw His free grace in the time of need, healing, deliverance and more. Why? Because all is conditioned on Him and His unconditional Love, how can we resist the awesomeness of God and His free grace!
The Enabling Power of Grace
Living in this world can be stressful and we can become faint at heart. Yet because of something built within us and a desire for God, we will endeavor to find a way to change, or a strength that will enable us to face circumstances and situations to help us become over comers.
Now in this chapter, I want to reveal a treasure of truth, a source of overcoming power, strength so abundant that life may not be the same again.
What is this overcoming power or abundances of strength? Again it is another piece of the treasure, a side or component of grace!
In the life of Apostle Paul of the bible, we encounter an example of this enabling power of Grace. Satan had sent an angelic messenger, one with a specific plan and purpose against Paul's life and ministry. This force was called to buffet Paul and to bind up the commission God had given him to accomplish on planet earth.
This entity had perceived quickly that Paul was doing exploits for God. He witnessed Paul's ministry expanding, people were being healed and set free. This was causing great damage and hindrance to the religious kingdom.
Now because of this, the entity retaliated by sending possibly one of his highest-ranking soldiers, one with a strategy of stopping Paul's progress with the gospel of grace.
Paul states, "And to keep me from being puffed up and to much elated by the exceeding greatness of these revelations, there was given me a thorn, a messenger of Satan, to rack and buffet and harass me, to keep me from being excessively exalted. Three times I called upon the Lord and besought and begged that it might depart from me."*
As we can see, Paul was very adamant with his prayers to God. Three times he sought the Lord to remove the problem. Simply Paul had reached his limit. He was getting discouraged and worn down. He was fatigued from the constant buffeting and harassment. But the astonishing thing was that God did not remove the problem, something Paul may not have been expecting.
Instead God spoke some profound words, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength and power are made perfect and show themselves most effective in your weakness."*
In other words God was saying, Paul, in your weakness I will infuse, enable and strengthen you by my grace, a strength for you to stand strong against the onslaught of your enemy.
Now, because Paul heard God’s proclamation and believed what He has spoken, he was brought out of his personal weakness through God's divine ability and strength of grace!
The thing that Paul learned from his battle was that he must be strong in the Lord and the power of His Grace!
In this battle Paul learned he must become totally dependent on God and in turn God would enable Paul to wrestle more effectively because of His grace, grace that would enable Paul to stand fast against the onslaught.
What God taught Paul was that there is a supernatural power, a divine strength and ability that can be obtained by anyone to stand up against the enemies of life.
Paul in and of himself did not know how to deal with the thorn of the flesh. He at times was confused and discouraged. Yet Paul went to the right source for answers and sought God for the plan.
Paul also learned grace did not remove the thorn from his flesh, but that grace enabled him to deal with the buffeting even while in the flesh.
Through it all Paul learned to experience patience, to endure with joy. He learned that when he was weak, there was an abundance of strength available to make him strong.
So let us understand that when grace flows, it enables us to endure all temptations, trials and tests. Simply, we can keep our head up in the midst of the battle without becoming miserable and defeated because His grace is at work within and propelling us to a place of more then conqueror.
When it seems like we have nothing left, no hope, no way out! All we need to do is surrender ourselves and allow God's ability of grace to take control of our situation.
What an opportunity to experience God and His treasures!
Paul learned, as we should, that God is in control and that we are to listen to His voice and allow ourselves to be taught by His Spirit who has an ever-abundant supply of grace to enable us!
So no matter what we are going through, God has much more grace in the time of need.
"No temptation has overtaken you except such is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear."*
No matter how or what darkness may plan or assign against us, it cannot prevail if grace is allowed to handle the circumstance. The problem we are challenged with is whether we allow God's grace to be our enabler or our flesh to be our defeater.
The Bible say’s "For they which receive abundance of grace shall reign as kings."*
As Paul found out, God's grace brought him to the place of kingship over his circumstance. We too must draw from God's grace to reign as king over our circumstance.
The bible has a good definition of this grace, "And so that you can know and understand what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His might strength."
This mighty strength is grace and it is always available in abundance.
As the son’s of God we have a right to rule over our circumstances, we have a right to be endowed with power from on high, it is already in us, all we have to do is be aware and learn how to live in it.
"Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."* Anther version says, "Find grace to help in good time for every need, appropriate help and well timed help, coming just when we need it."*
How do we tap into this vast abundance of power? Simple, go to the source, God! Ask Him for help, you may be amazed at the results of just asking. “You have not because you ask not.”
What an awesome God we have!
The bible say’s "Through Him also we have access entrance, introduction by faith into this grace in which we firmly and safely stand.”*
So remember, grace is not just the power of God to save the world but also the power of God to strengthen and sustain our walk in this life.
My friend, tap into grace, if not for you then do it for your family, that they may see the incredible love of the God.
The Comfort of Grace
To start this chapter I want you to remember this one thing, “In everything that God thinks, He thinks in Grace.”*
In dealing with People, whether its discipline, or by His mercy, it is all based in and on His grace, a grace we can safely stand.
The bible proclaims, "Through Him also we have our access entrance, introduction by faith into this grace, state of God's favor, in which we firmly and safely stand. And let us rejoice and exult in our hope of experiencing and enjoying this glory of God."*
This means it will not be moved or shaken, neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending or threatening, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able too move or separate us from His grace. In this we can safely be comforted.
We should be able to boldly state that we are to rejoice in this fact!
We are to be confident in His grace and to grow in the hope and the glory of God.
This hope means we are to have great expectations of good things, an attitude of confidence that comforts us throughout our journey of life.
The bible goes on to say, "Now may God, who loved us and gave us everlasting consolation and encouragement and well-founded hope through His grace. Comfort and encourage your hearts and strengthen you, make you steadfast and keep you unswerving in every good work and word."*
These words are proclaiming, that as we live in this flesh, even though we may suffer set backs or disappointments, there is an ever abundance of well-found hope, a source of great comfort. Not a fragile hope but an eternal hope of comfort that God will never leave us nor forsake us.
This comfort of grace is not a hope; we can just make it. But a comfort that comes in resting in God's grace, an entrance to a firm and safe foundation.
We are asked to comfort and encourage our hearts. Even in a day where we are not seeing or hearing encouraging things.
We are told that this encouragement will strengthen us to keep going and accomplish that which God has said He would.
The bible then reads, "For whatever was thus written in former days were written for our instructions that by our steadfast and patient endurance and encouragement, grace drawn from the Scriptures we might hold fast to and cherish hope."*
Not only is the Word here present now in our temporal life to encourage, but also it is an eternal encouragement, an encouragement that does not end whether we live or die, because it comes from grace and the faithfulness of God.
If we would try to listen to the heart of God, we would sense and hear a gentle voice, a voice of encouragement.
Contrary to what some have taught, God is speaking nice things to us and about us. If we read and listen, we can discern how much He loves and is encouraging us on to greater things and we would discover that He will do super abundantly, far above all that we dare ask, think, desire, hope or dream.
Read this carefully, it has never and never will be in the mind of God through His grace to give up on us!
Paul of the bible said, "I am convinced and sure of this very thing that He who began a good work in you will continue.”*
In another verse he said, "It is right and appropriate for me to have this confidence and feel this way about you all, because you have me in your heart and I hold you in my heart as partakers and sharers one and all with me, of grace." Paul was convinced and confident in this grace, so to we must be comforted and encouraged that this grace will propel and motivate us on to better things.
Every one of us desires to do better or to accomplish what God has planned and purposed for us. But we must also understand we cannot accomplish God’s true plan unless His grace is understood and allowed to be established in our heart.
Friend, this grace has come to you and we can be sure that this comforting grace is available for every need in times of trouble, even in times we do things we should not do!
The bible reads "For we do not have a God who is unable to understand and sympathize and have shared feelings with our weaknesses and infirmities and liability to the assaults of temptation, but one Who has been tempted in every respect as we are, yet without sinning. Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners, that we may receive mercy for our failures and find grace to help in good time for every need appropriate help and well timed help, coming just when we need it."*
These words exemplify that there is no turning us away, no condition to our entrance with God. We should be comforted in knowing we can come boldly and confidently into his presence to access His grace.
"But by the grace the unmerited favor and blessing of God, I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not found to be for nothing fruitless and without effect. In fact, I worked harder then all of them though it was not really I, but the grace the unmerited favor and blessing of God which was with me."*
We must come to the understanding that all true and pure accomplishments only come from and through God’s grace! There are those who would say they are a self made individuals. But please know that it is God who creates the pot in which we live, He decides and even if you live in the darkest corner of this earth, His grace does not change and it creates good out of evil. So let us be comforted and encouraged in this great hope!
The Discipline of Grace
My earthy father at times never had a problem sparing the rod concerning discipline. He tried his best with eight children who did not always obey the family rules. I love my father today because I know he was trying his best by what he knew, but I am confident to say that I learned from my discipline and I am well and stable because my father did it out of love. So in this chapter I want to show you God as a father through grace that teaches trains and disciplines.
The bible says, "For the grace of God, His unmerited favor and blessing has come and appeared for the deliverance of sin and the eternal salvation for all mankind. It has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness and worldly desires."*
Now grace is not only a source to save all humanity, but it is also a discipline factor to help keep us from being ensnared back into bondages that so easily besets us. Actually this grace draws us to God and causes a desire to live a life for God.
God has said His Son came with truth but also came full of grace, grace meaning the genuine power to walk out truth. And because we are in Him, we also have this same genuine power to train and discipline us in truth.
For to long we have tried to discipline our society through rules, programs, works and self effort, sociology that have made us masters at making others aware of their short-comings and problems.
Religion has written volumes on the inability to walk and live the life of God creating a modern day epidemic of sin consciousness and legalism. The problem with legalism and sin consciousness is that it leads us into more sin and problems. Mans ways cannot produce righteousness in the human race but dead works and over time destructive lives.
Simply, righteousness or right standing is only found in being justified by God. This must first be established in the heart of man in order to comprehend the work of grace and its discipline.
When the understanding of grace is revealed to the soul of man, he will then, realize he needs help and that it is God’s grace that will help train him in the truth of righteousness and right living.
For a person to think they can walk righteously in their own ability, through the flesh, will only result in frustration, dead works and a despondent soul.
But to walk into righteousness through grace, will produce fruits of godly righteousness which in turn propels us into outward good works we could never produce or will ever produce on our own.
The message of true grace is truth, and we need grace to walk out this truth, meaning grace that will train and discipline us in this truth.
Living by grace means life with disciplines, a life manifesting Gods love, character, and obedience on a different plane and perspective because it is God motivating us through love, not fear.
Understand that living out of the life of God does not mean we live perfect within this flesh; that will never happen while we are alive. There are those that would believe we can live and walk just like Jesus but this is self delusion, there will be only one like Jesus. So please stop trying to be him, this human intellect will never comprehend the fullness of who He is and I believe God never intended that we should from a human perspective.
For instance I can respect my earthly brother and take the good from him but God never wants me to be him, He wants me to be me and He want you to be just who you are, that what makes you so special to Him The great mystery is knowing God knows this very fact and this is why He sees us through His grace and gives us his grace to walk and help train in this life.
Understand the grace that trains does not start on the outside but on the inside. Most of our teachings centers on outward discipline or actions. This may seem honorable but we can discipline the outside all we want, yet it is the heart that has the problem, it is the place that must change before true fruit can be accomplished.
God's training of grace changes us on the inside where the soul is, it is the soul that must be conformed to the image of God, in turn producing God-likeness, a task we cannot do on our own nor have the human ability to do.
Read carefully, God’s definition of sin is much different than a list of do's and don'ts presented by external rules set by human endeavor. He said murder, adultery, coveting actually starts inside the heart. It is not just an act; the act is the end result of a bad heart!
The grace of God that disciplines draws us to Himself because it shows and present and create at place where His mercy, forgiveness and acceptance are in full view. This training or discipline never scorns or rejects but draws us closer towards God. It is a place of total rest, forgiveness and acceptance, no matter what condition the heart is in!
When we truly discover God's grace of discipline, change will start on the inside because we will not be afraid or fearful of His presence, no matter what we have done or how bad we failed or how dirty we feel!
Now this is hard for a legalist mind of religion to imagine or understand this concept of God. But we must understand this training of God’s grace; we must realize we can draw close to God no matter what we have been through or how good we think we are! Simply it is this grace that motivates and then it morphs us into a place of living after God.
The love chapter in Corinthians reveals God and this power of grace at its greatest potential. This is the very bases of His training and discipline.
For example, we have laws in our land that will discipline for abuse. For instants if I were to abuse my wife, I would be charged for wife abuse and may go to jail. I have this knowledge but this is not the reason I treat my wife with love, care and respect, as a matter of fact I never think of this law. Actually it’s not the law that keeps me from doing wrong. It's the motive of my heart based on love that keeps me doing what is right.
God gave only one commandment to this new age, to love the Lord with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself. This is the only commandment he gives to this world because it is no longer bond to the old Law. Think about this for a moment and you will realize the world would be much different if humanity lived by this one commandment. Why? Because it is a view of the discipline of grace at work the heart of man.
Friend, it is grace and love within this message that disciplines me into right action. Grace does not make me want to sin, but trains and disciplines me not to sin and gives me a desire to please God on the bases of His love.
Another reading of the bible says, "My son, do not think lightly or scorn to submit to the correction and discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage and give up and faint when you are disciplined by him. For the lord disciplines everyone He loves, and disciplines every son who he accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes."*
There are those who constantly discipline with condemnation and guilt. Who speak words of correction as a curse instead of a blessing, again read carefully, grace will not and cannot because it would not be God's discipline. True grace always reveals truth even though it may hurt or seen hard but then gives us the ability to walk out the truth.
Wow how can we lose!
God's discipline is not harsh or wrathful but full of love and forgiveness; so do not be afraid to allow grace to train and discipline, to take us to a place of dependence on God. As we do this we will begin to live out of his life and soon we will walk in His good and acceptable and perfect will.
The Gifts of Grace
One thing I find about studying humanity is how talented and gifted God has made His creation. He has imparted to humanity the gifts and knowledge to sustain life on this planet, although the pride of man may want to take some credit most should realize that all the glory must go to the creator of man, for God is the one and only one who gives and imparts the ability and power to live out these gifts.
In this chapter I want to reveal the importance and truth about the gifts of grace given to humans. God has given gifts unto all, in turn empowering people to the knowledge and understanding of God.
Now I am not going to get into details about specific gift like a doctor, mechanic or even a pastor. But to lay a foundation that will help us to understand the working of grace in our life
The bible say’s "Of which I became a minister according to the gift of grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power."
Paul of the bible states that he became a minister according to the gift of grace given by God. According to whose gift? God's gift! God's gift of empower, strength and establish the ability to do the works of the ministry.
Again we read "But to each one of us grace (gifts) was given according to the measure of the son’s gift.”*
Another version says, "Was given to each of us individually not indiscriminately, but in different ways in proportion to the measure of God’s rich and bounteous gifts"*
Remember that every perfect gift comes down from God above. So this means you are a perfect gift.
God is the head of all and has placed a portion of grace within all, not all His gifts but a portion. Why? Because he is of many parts! There will only be one God but each of us as a part of His body becomes one with Him.
"...He bestowed gifts unto men. ...And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teacher,"*
Who gave and bestowed gifts? God! He is the author and finisher of our gift. Simply, God called, proportioned and gave! And why did He give? "For the equipping of us for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of God,"*
God gave grace gifts unto humanity for one purpose and one purpose only, to equip, edify and build up his body. Why? So they as the body could do corporately the works of God, as a complete body of God on earth.
"Till we all come to the unity of the faith and the knowledge of the son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of God."*
The unity of the faith does not mean we will all have the same beliefs, but that we would come to the full and accurate knowledge of who we are and who He is concerning us.
The words perfect man means maturing more into His likeness, the measure and stature of His fullness and grace.
"As each of you has received a grace gift (a particular talent, a gracious divine endowment), employ it for one another as [benefits] good trustees of God's many-sided grace..."*
The word many-sided can also be translated manifold or variegated. This means many and various, having various forms.
Simply we all have different gifts of grace, with different applications, different forms and variations, we are containers and yet dispensers of grace, a irrevocable grace.
"For God's gifts and His call are irrevocable. [He never withdraws then when once they are given, and he does not change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace or to whom He sends His call.]"*
Another version says that the call is without repentance. The reason it is without repentance! God gave it, it is an irrevocable calling because God chose us and chose the gifts.
"Even as in His love he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world...For He foreordained us...in accordance with the purpose of His will..."*
"Having gifts, faculties, talents, qualities that differ according to the grace given us, let us them...”*
We all have different grace gifts and the purpose is for the edification and building up, free gifts foreordained by God's will and plan to present the wonderful works of His grace!
"For by the grace given to me I warn everyone among you not to estimate and think of himself more highly than he ought..."*
"But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not for nothing. In fact, I worked harder then all of them, though it was not really I, but the grace of God which was in me."*
"...But each has his own special gift from God, one of this kind and one of another."*
Paul of the bible perceived, as we should, that the gift was God's so graciously imparted. Paul knew he could do great things for God, but not in his own ability, but by the grace given him he said I am what I am!
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning."*
God's grace gift within us, is not a nothing gift, but a good and perfect gift. A variety of gifts He has put His personal touch too. Our grace gifts, whatever it are, comes down from the Father above and He does not change his mind about what He has given us.
Remember the gifts so graciously imparted to you will make way for themselves. They are set right where God so desires. Many times we feel that they are not going any where or lack in gifts, not so, except what God has given you and allow the gifts to have make way for themselves! Trust God and what He has for you.
The Speech of Grace
As a teacher and motivator, I have had the privilege of speaking in the podiums of many conferences. I have had audience with all walks of life, nationalities, cultures and traditions.
What I speak comes from my knowledge and the revelation that has so graciously been extended me through communicated truth.
Now please understand and assure you, that I do not take this gift of grace lightly. And stand at awe that God would even use a vessel like me! But let us understand that in some way or form we all at times teach, it is the nature of man to teach and to speak knowledge to others, but what are we speaking or what is in our speech?
The Bible says "Let your speech be with grace, seasoned with salt.”*
What does it mean, let your speech be with grace and seasoned with salt? Well, as we have learned throughout this writing, grace is an infused power of God to enable us in times of need, an inner strength given to face all our circumstances. One of the vehicles by which this power can be extended, is through our speech or by what we speak to one another.
"Let no foul or polluting language, nor do neither evil words nor unwholesome or worthless talks ever come out of tour mouth, but only such speech as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting the need and occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace to those who hear it."* As we see in these words, we are to give grace to the hearer!
The incredible truth of grace is that God is the source of all grace. Yet, God in His grace allows human vessels to be containers and in turn allows them to dispense grace to the hearer.
Simply we are vessels that have opportunity, with God's direction, to propel God's infused power by what we speak! Speech that is good and beneficial to the progress of others.
Friend, we are to become salt of the earth, salt is that which preserves and gives flavor, this means we are salt shakers or containers of blessings and in turn shake grace onto and into the lives of others.
The bible says that life and death are in the power of the tongue and in the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
The question again is what are we speaking?
"But the human tongue can be tamed by no man. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men who were made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come forth blessing and cursing. These things, my brethren, ought not to be.*
These words are talking to us. And I must confess I have witnessed and partook of this deplorable action.
The tongue no man can tame but if one is listening to God and saturated with His positive message, then we can be used to bring froth springs of living water or grace!
The bible says that the son came full of grace and truth, full of power and the genuine from God.
His speech was full of grace and truth and he went forth healing and finding favor with man. He spoke what his father spoke and it brought life and deliverance to those who listened.
He spoke words that God spoke and by this preserved the souls of men, this is grace in action.
"For the word God speaks (grace) is alive and full of power, making it active, operative, energizing and effective: it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life, soul, and spirit, and of joints and marrow, of the deepest parts of our nature, exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart."*
God desires us to speak as He speaks yet this is not easy to accomplish in a world that bombards our soul with images and speech that derives it foundation from the philosophies of men. A world that is constantly speaking to us what we must be, what we must wear, what we must drive. Who we should marry, an never ending list that never stops day and night.
"This is my comfort and consolation in my affliction: that your word (grace) has revived me and given me life... Your word (grace) is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path."*
"Look well to yourself and to your teaching (speaking); persevere in these things, for by so doing you will save both yourself and those who hear you."*
"Whoever speaks let him do it as one who utters oracles of God.”*
The bible goes on to say, "To me, though I am the least of all the saints, this grace was granted to me to proclaim to the gentiles the unending, boundless, fathomless, incalculable and exhaustible riches of Christ."
So are we speaking the unending, boundless, fathomless, incalculable and exhaustible riches to those who hear us? Are we being dispensers of God's ever-abundant power through our speech?
Friend, let our words be seasoned with salt, that those who hear may be preserved and protected.
Shield your heart from the words that destroy and be one who speaks the speech of grace!
The Security of Grace
On September eleventh two thousand one, I watched in horror as the twin towers came down. Although at the time it was hard to understand why, I did know that this major event would change our world forever.
One of the major concerns and change would be our security. Fear came with full force and today our nations and people are ready to give up all freedom and rights just to have a sense of security.
The power of fear has many side effects and can expose the soul of men to the works of the flesh.
Fear in some ways is like faith because fear also sees thing as if they were, even though it is not.
We all seek security in one form or another. In our relationships, our finances, our jobs, our emotions or striving to feel secure even with God.
By understanding grace and its place in our life, all our earthly fears will quickly look small, because understanding our security by grace brings God to the fore front of all we are and have in this life.
If one finds God and His secure grace, one will quickly realize that God is in control and no mater what the world throws our way we will be secure in knowing he will never leave us or forsake us.
He will be there to supply all our needs according to His riches in glory.
"Through Him also we have our access entrance, introduction) by faith into this grace (state of God's favor in which we firmly and safely stand”*
Legalism is the number one sin in humanity. It is a belief system of how we see and approach God and becomes a way to merit God's approval. Its foundation is based in fear and insecurity!
To know grace is to know God and causes us to approach Him on the merit of God alone.
To know grace, is to know we are accepted in the beloved not on our effort or works.
To know this is to bring security into ones soul and in turn cause the person to start experiencing the God kind of life.
"The God of all grace, who has called you to His own eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will Himself complete and make you what you ought to be, establish and ground you securely.”
"But it is God who confirms and makes us steadfast and establishes us [in joint fellowship] with you in Christ, and has consecrated and anointed us, putting His seal upon us and giving us His Spirit in our hearts as the security deposit and guarantee."*
In grace, by His Spirit, we have been sealed with an incredible advantage of assurance and security.
Simply, when we received God, he sends His Spirit into us as a guarantee or a security lock on our inheritance.
This security seal is unbreakable because it was God Himself who decreed it. His signet ring is the Holy Spirit who represents the seal of guarantee, the promise of assurance within our heart through grace.
Again, it has nothing to do with our good works or behavior or meriting approval but believing in the completed work of grace through the cross.
Never are we commanded to be resealed or sealed again, it is a finished transaction sealed by God through the work of grace. It is God's way of ownership.
By marking us with His seal, He is saying, I have pledged by my word and the vastness of my grace for now and forever more for your future.
In the realm of the Spirit, every principality and power knows who owns us.
The seal is a seal of authority; it is a royal seal, an insignia from the very throne of grace that proclaims our position, status and victory over darkness, a personal guarantee, a seal of security that we have every right to firmly stand in.
"In Him you also who have heard the Word of Truth, the glad tidings [Gospel] of your salvation, and have believed in and adhered to and relied on Him, were stamped with the seal of the long-promised Holy Spirit. That [Spirit] is the guarantee of our inheritance [the first fruits, the pledge and foretaste, the down payment on our heritage], in anticipation of its full redemption and our acquiring [complete] possession of it-to the praise of His glory."*
"But the firm foundation of (laid by) God stands, sure and unshaken, bearing this seal. The Lord knows those who are His."*
The security of grace is a seal of assurance, a spiritual transaction that has been finished.
It has been received in us through God. In this, the Spirit of grace will keep us secure. It may not always show on the outside but we can be assured we are safe and secure on the inside.
The grace we safely stand in is unmovable, unshakable and can never be taken away. In this we safely stand.
The Covenant of Grace
Today we live in a special age, an age that God has poured out His Spirit on all flesh. Humanity is no longer hindered to walk into the presents of a holy God and he does not have to feel guilt and condemnation in His presents.
We have a new and better Covenant or Testament established on better promises, through a better sacrifice, the death and resurrections of a savor.
"Jesus has become the guarantee of a better, stronger agreement, a more excellent and more advantageous covenant."*
In the days of the Old Testament, God created a covenant of works, the Law, wherein life was promised upon the condition of perfect personal obedience. If they did not fulfill the condition they were cursed with a curse.
"And all who depend on the Law are under the curse and doomed to disappointment and destruction..."*
God established the Law and its ordnance to bring blessings upon man, but man failed to walk therein. Now when I talk about the Law, we are speaking of a series of covenants given to the Jews of the Old Testament, yes they were an act of divine grace, arrangements initiated by God out of his spontaneous mercy. But they were Laws of conditions. The Law was never meant to save or make perfect humanity but to show man's depravity, and their need for a savior.
"For the Law never made anything perfect."*
"Now it is evident that no person is justified, declared righteous and brought into right standing with God through the Law."*
In other words God in His love for us abolished or made obsolete the old covenant of Law and works, and established a new covenant of grace with better promises.
"But as it now is, He has acquired a priestly ministry which is as much superior and more excellent than the old as the covenant of which He is the mediator, is superior and more excellent, because it is enacted and rest upon more important promises."*
"Christ is therefore the mediator of an entirely new agreement, Testament, covenant, so that those who are called and offered it may receive the fulfillment of the promised everlasting inheritance."*
"For if that first covenant had been without defect, there would have been no room for another one or an attempt to institute another one.”*
"When God speaks of a new covenant or agreement. He makes the first one obsolete, out of use. And what is obsolete, out of use and annulled because of age, is ripe for disappearance and to be dispensed with all together."*
Friend, we have a better covenant established by God.
Not a works gospel established by external rule, regulations and standards.
Not a covenant of guilt and condemnation but a covenant of grace that brings security and acceptance of God, a grace that has broken the Law's power over humanity, and the despair of its curse.
"Christ purchased our freedom from the curse of the Law and its condemnation by becoming a curse for us.”*
"But if it is by grace, it is no longer conditioned on works or anything men have done. Otherwise, grace would no longer be grace, it would be meaningless." *
The Covenant of Grace is a work of grace, a love of a Father to all humanity to show He does care.
The gospel of the good news is a simple act of God taking all responsibility where humanity would only fail, and then in turn giving them all the benefits, stature and position they did not deserve.
The world cannot seem to comprehend this simple gospel.
They cannot comprehend this unconditional love.
Humanity, even though the Law is stalled, is still looking to appease God on self-effort, works and performance. Because of this they are drenched in defeat, guilt and condemnation. A feeling of they ought to, have to and must do something to find favor, when all they have to do is accept what God in the completed work of the cross!
"It is He who has qualified us, making us to be fit and worthy and sufficient as ministers and dispensers of a new covenant, not ministers of the letter of legally written code but of the Spirit; for the code of the Law kills, but the Spirit makes alive."*
In this we are qualified to bring and minister this great covenant, dispensers of a new and better covenant of grace.
The Bible Says, "Assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was entrusted to me to dispense to you for your benefit."
Stewardship can also mean dispensation or administration, which means, God making known what His will is for a particular, specific period of time but not necessarily limited to time.
We live in the greatest turbulent times on planet earth. History is about to change before us, the Son is coming soon. The age of grace is a time of incredible calibration, a time of promises, a covenant of love to proclaim to all the nations.
"And so that you can know and understand what is the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His power in and for us who believe, as demonstrated in the working of His mighty strength."*
The covenant of grace is a working of His mighty strength, the same strength that infuses us in a world of turmoil, so stand fast in this grace as the day of His coming approaches.
The Healing of Grace
The next couple chapters are a must read and I must also say they tend to be my favorites, why? Because by now we are beginning to get a different picture of God, a new understanding of a wonderful Father of unconditional love!
So let me start by tell you about the healing of grace because this revelation is like icing on the cake and it helps to settle the healing transformation of your heart.
Now the greatest healing you will ever receive from this message, if you get it, is not ever being afraid to approach the Almighty God because of feeling inferior or guilt.
As one comprehends grace and its power, one will begin to feel a sense of healing and joy of being a human again because you have now become secure in your standing with God.
Sadly many have a horrible distorted view of God that makes Him look like a taskmaster, one swinging an axe of pain and destruction instead of a God of complete love and caring.
Today we have brained washed society to be cautious at anyone who cares. The touchy feely syndrome is considered taboo. We are not allowed to feel care because it may trigger an emotion that may compromise our human space. Our ego has taken control and the room for caring is been replaced with self, which is back into slavery.
Friend people who can love and care are more vulnerable to be hurt but in the end these individuals will have more friends and reap a better fulfilled life if their heart is right. We are going to be surprised when it’s our time to go into His present and see how touchy and feely He really is.
"For I am persuaded beyond doubt, am sure, that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."*
Legalism has always been a worldly ace in the hole, a way of distorting man's view of God. Legalism is simply when someone imposes their preconceived notions of God as absolute on others. Its teachings add or take away from what God has accomplished through the work of the cross.
Legalism is an attitude that a person must act or be a certain way in order to be blessed or accepted by God. A system of religion, which says a person, must do something to earn merit, keep or get salvation or to get into the presence of God.
Religion on this planet is the center of much of the terror we see today, a part humanity willing to give their lives in the name of a god. a god or gods so cruel, hideous and destructive. Yet millions flock to join the cause for the right to worship, congregate and pray to their god or gods.
Their gospel is one of death, works and self-effort. A legalist effort to appease and please a god who has no time to care about humanity but a manipulative, self serving ego, that in no way even resembles the God of the bible.
Although it is easy to recognize from the comforts of our western views, we are not exempt from this destructive way of thinking.
In North America legalism has caused more pain then we can imagine.
The battle rages over doctrines that say we can or we can't, the list is never ending, the dialog infinite.
We spend more time criticizing and destroying our own then fulfilling the commandment, love the Lord your God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself!
To know the awesome grace of God is to know God, His motivation, His heart!
The God of grace is a merciful God that is why He sent His Son.
God knew man could not save himself so he did it Himself. He established a covenant and fulfilled it Himself.
Mans place is only to except it and let God do all the work.
The healing of grace brings us out of our legalist view of God and brings us to a place of understanding God's acceptance of who we are, just as we are!
The healing of grace brings us out of sin consciousness and delivers us to a place of rest, security and assurance.
"Blessed to be envied are those whose iniquities are forgiven and whose sins are covered up and completely buried. Blessed and to be envied is the person whose sin the Lord will take no account nor reckon it against him."*
The riches of His grace replace our lost ness and depravity with His righteousness, His holiness, and His resurrected life, with all its inheritance.
The healing of grace is unconditional love. That means God's love is unconditional; it is not a love drawn from God by something good in us. It flows from God because it is His nature to do so.
God's love is not a reaction to us but an action towards us.
His love is not dependent on who we are but on who he is.
He loves because that who he is, and that is what grace is the action of unconditional love.
"We love Him because He first loved us."*
God has never said, I will love you if, I will love you when, I will love you because, I will love after, I will love you presuming. No! God loves us because of who He is; love!
Grace is the unconditional love of God in Christ freely given to the sinful, the undeserving, and the imperfect.
Yes, to all of us who have failed!
To understand grace is to heal the heart.
Simply, grace needs to be realized, we must experience it in all its effects and applications.
It must saturate our emotions and well-being.
It must become the foundation of our self-worth.
By grace our relationship, our damage emotions; our distorted personality can be healed.
By grace our guilt and condemnation for feeling responsible for doing, or not doing, the feeling of constant pressure of trying to do and be more, will be healed.
Grace says there is only one to trust with our guilt and that is Christ and Christ alone.
"Therefore there is now no condemnation, no adjudging guilty or wrong for those who are in Christ Jesus."*
Legalism says, do and grace says, done.
Legalism emphasizes what man does, grace emphasizes what God does.
Legalism draws on man's resources, grace draws on God's resources.
Legalism deals with external rules and standards, grace deals with inner heart attitude.
Legalism's primary focus is ought to, have to and must, Grace is want to.
Legalism lives life from the outside in and grace lives life from the inside out.
Legalism declares do in order to be, grace declares you are, therefore do.
Legalism produces guilt and condemnation; grace produces victory, security and acceptance.
Legalism's operating principles are works, self-effort and performance, grace is receive, trust and rest.
Grace is the healer of souls and it is in abundant supply.
"Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in good time for every need, appropriate help and well timed help, coming just when we need it."*
Many of us need grace for many reasons, the pain and trials of life can be enormous at time, but God has not forgotten us with His healing grace, which is present, active and always ready at any time of need.
The Grace of Unconditional Love
Although there are many more sides of grace, I feel I have given a good overview or applications to help us better perceive the wonders of grace.
Again this writing can do no justice to this vast subject. But we have eaten a good meal of understanding to better help us live out of this great promise.
Now I have save this chapter for last because it will give the full essence of who God is and the fullness of His grace. I had started this chapter as a book on love, but after the first chapter of writing I could say no more as I seen this incredible God in His view toward me. So it may seem a little disjointed from this book but as you finish it you will see why it is needed to get the full point across about God and His grace.
The bible “For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”*
One day as I pondered these scriptures, I was envious of the Apostle Paul's statement that he was persuaded beyond doubt that nothing would be able to separate him from the love of God in Christ Jesus.
I thought, what was it that made Paul persuaded beyond doubt of God's Love and grace?
What did he experience that made him so sure of this love?
Yes, I knew God so loved the world that he gave His Son to all humanity, but there was something I was missing!
Although I was blessed to be raised in a family full of earthly love and acceptance I was fascinated at this concept of love that seemed so foreign in a world filled with greed, hate and war.
I desired to know so I proceeded to ask God if He could reveal this truth to my heart. Now I understood we are all different in how we perceive things. So I decided to except a heart felt prayer that Paul wrote in the bible.
He prayed that our love may abound yet more and more and extend to its fullest development in knowledge and all keen insight, that our love may display itself in greater depth of acquaintance and more comprehensive discernment.
I desired the full development of this knowledge, a greater depth of acquaintance and comprehension.
But did I really know what I was asking for?
Was I really ready for what the universal God was about to show me?
Little did I know that with this prayer, would take me on a journey that would move the depths of my soul in such a way that my view of God would change forever.
I asked of the Spirit's help and with confidence I knew I could rely on the teacher and comforter to come along side me in my search for this great treasure.
A development in knowledge and a keen insight of God’s love and grace to all.
My first question was very simple, “where do I begin?”
I thought, for sure a few books from the local book store would help me in my search. I read with eagerness but ended up frazzled and under condemnation at the fact that I could not walk the love they were presenting me. You know the books that never tell you how it works, man’s philosophies of what we must do and more about what we must do to walk in love.
Each book simply pointed out how weak humans are to loving God, family, wife, children, dog, and humanity. It all sounded right and good but again all I felt was more defeated then motivated.
From my view it is hard to love others like God when you do not even comprehend what God’s love is. Yes there are many that think they know what God’s love is but in the end most on this planet have no true concept of God’s love.
I quickly realized that if I was going to get on this train I was going to have to go to a different source for this journey, that being the bible.
As I began to study the word love from the bible, I perceived something exciting in my being, something pulling me on the path to finding this great treasure.
Then an idea of light flashed into this pea sized brain. Maybe I should change my perspective to the view of a son of God. In other words, I felt I may grasp this love by knowing I have right standing as a co-equal with the God of this universe. I had to approach this subject with respect and a righteous conscious mentality.
So by this position, I was led to a scripture in the bible that said, “May Christ through your faith actually dwell, settle down, abide, and make His permanent home in your heart!”*
“May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely on love. That you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth of it.”
“That you may really come to know practically, through experience for yourselves the love of Christ, which far surpasses mere knowledge.”
It said, “rooted deep in love and founded securely on love."* Interesting, I felt that being found securely on love maybe a key to the treasure of this love.
The bible went on to say, "That you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth of it."*
This was a profound statement and I knew that I needed this power to be strong in grasping the breadth and length and height and depth of this love.
It then said, "That you may really come to know practically, through experience for yourselves the love of God, which far surpasses mere knowledge.
Wow, that surpasses mere knowledge!
This struck me like a hammer. I could see that this was not something to be grasped by mere human thinking. I knew that this was an enlightenment to be grasped through the spirit.
As I searched the bible, there was one word that kept coming up over and over again in my spirit, and that was the word, unconditional!
I read more, “For I am persuaded beyond doubt am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in our Lord.”*
“Who is there to condemn us? Will the Messiah, Who died, or rather who was raised from the dead, Who is at the right hand of God actually pleading as He intercedes for us? Who shall ever separate us from God’s love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword?"*
"In this is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins.”
As I pondered these words, I began to realized that this love was not based my actions, conduct or behavior. It had nothing to do with my accomplishments, stature or position.
I realized it had nothing to do with me loving God, but that He loved me. I could see that I simply could not influence this love.
It was given to all humanity, all creation without condition.
I also came to the quick understanding that most people do not know this unconditional love and only know conditional love.
A conditional love that says we must earn the right to be loved.
No wonder religion is knee deep in a works or legalism.
We have taught a religion that God's love is conditional and in this it can be taken back at any time if He is not pleased. This horrible message approach to God has only given the world a view of religion as a joke.
Now I had no problem as a human seeing that I was not worthy of this love, but it made no difference what I felt or thought, God decided to love me anyway. And there is absolutely no way that I could get God to love me anymore or any less then he already does.
Then I thought of a familiar scripture, the one we use at weddings to remind the new bride and groom how to love each other. The one that is used by religion to hammer us into submission, yes I am speaking of the love chapter.
“Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong].”*
It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails"
Know that if God is love then if I substitute Love for God then what does it say?
"God endures long and is patient and kind; God never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, God is not boastful or vainglorious, He does not display himself haughtily. God is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); He is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. God does not insist on His own rights or His own way, for He is not self-seeking; not touchy or fretful or resentful; He takes no account of the evil done to Him.
God does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but He rejoices when right and truth prevail. God bears up under anything and everything that comes, He is ever ready to believe the best of every person, His hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and He endures everything [without weakening]. God never fails"
Wow! I could see something different, something simple yet profound. I felt love pouring out of these words. Words that did not say what I must do but what he has done and doing. The love chapter no longer looked the same.
By seeing this truth all condemnation quickly left because this is who God is love! God was never telling us how to live this love but telling us who He was as love.
God is patient and endures long with me!
God is not rude to me!
God is not touchy, fretful or resentful to me!
God takes no account of the evil I do to him that means sin.
God never is envious nor boils over with jealousy towards me.
It goes on and on, wow that knock religion out of the ball park.
How could I not get secure with this awesome God? How could I not want to be around this God?
By seeing this I could understand that there was nothing that could be added to the perfect love and grace and now I could understand the words of John, "There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment and so he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love."*
Yes that’s right, perfect love casts out fear. What perfect love, God! If Religion could teach this there churches and mosques would be full for the right reasons. They do not have to be afraid of God.
I knew that there was nothing I could add or take away from this love. It was a complete love that would not change and would be the same yesterday, today and forever.
It was an unchanging, unmovable love that would never cease, change or end.
I could see there was no way to exhaust it. A consuming love of a God to me as a son!
I was over taken with love and appreciation for God!
I could now understand the writings in the book of Hebrew that said, "Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]."*
I mean, the only way anyone could come fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace is only by being secured in God's love.
God has always desired intimacy with humanity. He longs for people to trust Him, to talk to him. But because of a slanted view of God through religion He is a God who is fretful or resentful, boils over with jealousy, wrathful and full of vengeance.
We have, without realizing, shunned God for fear that he will not accept us. Yet He longs to help us, guide us and to be a God who wants to smother His unconditional love upon all of us.
Many in the world ignore Him. Don't spend any time with him. Don't try to find out who He is and what he is like. Why? Because many have given a false image of who He really is. Yet He is the God who has done everything possible in this universe, through His son, to show humanity His intense love.
“But God--so rich is He in His mercy, because of and in order to satisfy the great and wonderful and intense love with which He loved us,”*
"But God shows and clearly proves His [own] love for us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for us."*
"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control."*
I now understood John when he said; "We love Him, because He first loved us."*
I was now understanding Paul when he said; "For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God."*
God's love is personal. It reaches across all our traditions, it sees no color or borders. It has no interest in philosophies. He is in the business of saving humanity no matter their condition. This is love, this is God. Here is love from the bible.
He made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
There is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
All things are from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them.
God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.
The Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.
While we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.
God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
While we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son and much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
It does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.
By His doing you are in Christ Jesus.
God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ, by grace you have been saved.
By grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.
He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of the Son of His love.
His love is there and always will be there now and into eternity. He waiting patiently for humanity to look to Him and so he can lavish on more of His awesome love through the work of the cross.
We simply do not know why God has so loved us, or why He desires to save us. We do know we are created in his image and in His likeness but why does he still love us when we are sinners, when we disobey Him, shun Him and fail Him.
Yet this fact remains, He is love, and we will never be able to stop Him from loving us, no matter how hard we try.
My friend it surpasses understanding or comprehension. The human mind is at a stop to reason the magnitude of this incredible loving person.
He does not have favorites He simple loves all the same but what He desires is an intimate father and child relationship, one where a human being can actually draw from all that He is and has as part of His household.
In the end I do not know if this is an easy doctrine to bring to the church or to grasp as an individual. To think that no mater how good or how bad I am. No mater what anyone thinks of me I am comforted to know this truth of unconditional love?
God Said, “I will not in any way fail you nor give you up, nor leave you without support. I will not, I will not, I will not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let you down relax my hold on you, assuredly not!"*
And I give them eternal life, and they shall never lose it or perish throughout the ages. [To all eternity they shall never by any means be destroyed.] And no one is able to snatch them out of my hand."*
Believe me; I can now say beyond doubt that nothing in all creation will separate me from the love of God.
Copyright Roxy Nolin 2002 - Revised 2008