Grace

God is love.

Because He is love all He does is a result of His Love for you

He only ever does what is good for you

Evil occurs because you reject God’s will and place yourself out of God’s love and protection

Trials occur because He loves you and is doing all He can do either to bring you back to Him or mature you and prepare you for the next Service to Him

Grace is the expression of this Love

You do not deserve this love

It is purely because He loves you as His own

And it is because His mercies are new every morning, that you are not destroyed but lovingly brought back to God.

God is complete in Himself and does not need you.  He brought you into existence not His sake but for yours so that you could enjoy a relationship with Him, as well as all the delights He has prepared for you now and in eternity.

But His Grace began even before this when He prepared a path for you to walk in before creation had even occurred.

In essence, Grace is God doing something for you that He does not need too as it is not a reward of service or faith.  It is an act resulting solely out of His Love for you and benefits you in some way.  Even rewards are a form of His Grace as He is King and does not need to give them for any service you do for Him.

Grace is God expressing his Love to you even though you do not know you need it and do not deserve it.  All God does is an expression of His grace towards you.

God’s Grace, mercy and compassion are inseparable from His Love as they are its natural expression towards you.

His Love Graces you with what you need without your knowing you need it or without having done anything to deserve it. His Mercy allows you to fail and not be destroyed.  His Compassion means He treats you as His children.

His whole attitude is toward what is best for you.

It is this attitude of desiring to Grace you that frees His Love to work always for your best but which is also sourced in His Love so that is always for your best and in a sense coexisted with His Love from the beginning of all things as it so much a part of His Nature of Love.  Love is  servant and God is Love.  Love seeks to do what is best for another, whatever the cost and Grace is an expression of this service.

Salvation is God’s Grace in action.  He did not need to do it but His Love drove Him to die for you even though He was not really required to do it.

Calvary and all it entails is His Grace. All His Mercy is epitomised in Calvary and through all that Jesus did there for you.

Grace is the free and unmerited favour or beneficence of God.  In other words, God does something good for you without requiring you to do something for Him and often without your knowing you needed the thing done for you or even knowing the thing has been done for you.  It is God giving you the things you don’t deserve like Jesus, eternal life, salvation, a place in heaven, The Holy Spirit, keeping you alive, providing all you need to live and serve Him etc.

God, in His Love for you, looks down and sees you have a need.  He does not have to meet that need but does so out of love for you.  This action is His Grace, a result of His favour towards you.  He requires nothing on your part except thankfulness.

This is grace in its simplicity.  Most who talk about Grace talk about its outworking and not what it is.

It is because of grace you can know God exists, His requirements of you and what He has done for you and because of this knowledge you are able to love and worship Him.

Without God’s revelation of Himself to you, you could only assume that He existed and what He was like, but God loves you more than you can imagine and as a result of this Love reveals to you all you need to know about Himself and His requirements (Duet 29:29).

What God’s Grace has done!

God brought you into existence before you knew what that was, giving you life and purpose. He has sustained you until now on earth and will do so through eternity and infinity. It was out of His Love for you that you He has done this and continues to do so.

His Love caused Him to send Jesus to earth to communicate directly with you to teach you what God required of you then sacrificed Jesus to meet all the spiritual consequences of your sin as well as to remove the barrier of defilement between God and you.

His next act of Grace was to have The Holy Spirit strive with your spirit so that you would appreciate what God had done for you, offered you as well as what He has rescued you from so you would then leave the kingdom of darkness, follow Jesus and join The Kingdom of the Father as an appreciative citizen of His Love for you.

Until you appreciate what the kingdom of darkness is and its effects on you, you will not really appreciate His Kingdom of Light and life, and the freedom He has given you from your former bondages.  It is only after the darkness can you see the light more clearly.

This is why it is hard for people raised in Christian families to really appreciate God’s Love and deliverance until they see the effects of the kingdom of Satan on people.

Out of His Love for you He gave you gifts to help you in your battles with the kingdom of darkness and so you could also do His work as a servant of His. He gives you only the gifts you needed along with His delegated Authority (through His Son), as these are all that is needed for you to serve Him spiritually in the work He has chosen for you.  He also provides your physical needs to sustain you in your serving Him (Matt 6:32-34).

He matures you through His plan for your life. Suffering is a part of His Grace and is designed to either:

Mature you for greater service and rewards, or

Guide you back to a correct relationship with Jesus and The Father.

He nurtures you and develops you (as well as protecting you from His enemy) until you understand your relationship with Him and what it means and thus desire an intimate relationship with Him and His Son.  He does allow the enemy limited and controlled access to you for the purpose of maturity and growth as a follower of His.

Every breath you take, you take because He allows you and keeps you alive.

Everything you do is done because he prepares you for it and helps you to do it.

Everything that happens to you does so because He sustains all things and controls them

Finally, He will accept you, after your death, and take you to the Place He has prepared for you where you will dwell with Him and know Him forever in a relationship of Love, in a place that will see no more pain and suffering, forever in His presence.

All these He has done out of His Loving Grace as you did not know you needed these things.

How can you doubt His Love and Grace after all that He has done for you? You should be thankful for what He has done, as ungratefulness, thanklessness or complaining about your circumstances dishonours Him, His Love and His Grace.

Grace is the act of God taking a personal interest in your lives, providing all you need for every aspect of your existence and being - even though you do nothing to deserve it or know you need it.  Your obedience, thankfulness and loving service to Him is the response you should have to God’s Love.  If you do not have this you may need deliverance to actually appreciate what God has done for you out of His Grace towards you.

To merit Grace would bring in legalism - that God’s provision was a result of something He was bound to give you. There are rewards for obedience, but God does not have to give these as He is your maker, owner and ruler and so does not need to reward you for obedience or your love toward Him, but He is love and chooses to reward you.

In a sense rewards are a sign of His grace but are not an act of Grace as they are for service.

The Grace of your God is shown by His providing for the wicked as well as the righteous. God gives both classes of people (and there are only two as there is no such thing as a fence sitter) all they need to know Him and to meet His requirements. But the wicked reject the control of God and reap the results of abusing and rejecting His Grace, as do the righteous when they also do this (its called disobedience or rebellion and is a form of idolatry by placing your will before that of God’s).

The Grace of God is also shown in that He risks your rejecting Him as He removes the things of the world from your life and deals with things in your life that need correcting, replacing them with those things He wants you to have and use while maturing and discipling you through suffering, either physical, emotional or mentally. Punishment is also His Grace as He uses it to try and turn you from your incorrect ways towards His Perfect Plan for your life!

Remember!  Any punishment you have is not from God.  It is a natural consequence of what you have done that God must allow to happen as it is in His guidelines in The Bible (Gal 6:7-8) but in which He will help you as He can and minimise it in any way He can if you repent of the wrong you have done or are doing.

Grace is a natural outcome of God’s Love, as is His Graciousness. Grace and graciousness should be a natural part of your life’s expression of the reflection of the Character of God in you and will be if His Love is in you.

Each member of the Godhead expresses His Grace differently.

The Father, in sending Jesus, in providing your physical and spiritual needs, in ordering the circumstances of your life for The Holy Spirit to use to guide you into the maturity required of your relationship with Jesus.

The Holy Spirit as He lives in those who are citizens of The Kingdom of God and guides, empowers and matures them to the image of Jesus.  All of life’s experiences are designed purely for this development into the Character of Jesus.

The Lord Jesus, in giving up all He had in heaven and coming to earth as one of us to teach you about The Father, His Kingdom and The Holy Spirit, then dying to make possible what He had taught you about your roles, responsibilities relationships and rewards in The Kingdom, as well as sending The Holy Spirit to help you to keep these properly. It is with awe that you mention the Grace of Jesus to call you friend as well as step brother or step sister!

As the song says

It is Grace that has brought you thus far and it is Grace that will carry you home.

This does not cover the Grace of God expressed to you by The Trinity as  whole when they all work in unison as one towards you.

Thankfulness

Our response to God’s Grace should be thankfulness in all things as His Love and Grace are behind what happens to you because God is in complete control of all that happens to: you, creation, Satan, your circumstances, and uses them for your benefit now and in the eternity to come.

Not to accept what God allows and complain about it is to call His Love into question as well as to imply He made a mistake and that He is not perfect.

If you could see things as God sees them then you would always rejoice and never complain.

According to your degree of trust in God’s Love, Control, Purposes and Plans for you will be your thankfulness for, and acceptance of, what He allows to happen to you!

Law and Grace

In Acts 15 a dispute arose over whether it was necessary for the gentiles to follow the requirements of The Mosaic Law. The area of circumcision was the issue as to a Jew it was necessary for identification with the Jewish Religion and thus with God.  Verse 5 states it more clearly.

Act 15:5  But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.

The counsel in Jerusalem deliberated and Peter stated that there was no difference between Jew and Gentile.  Whether or not you had faith in Jesus was the important thing and not what you did;.

Act 15:8-9  And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; and put no difference between you and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

Peter then stated that the Jews could not keep The Law so why should they expect the Gentiles to keep The Law.

Act 15:10-11  Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither your fathers nor you were able to bear?  But you believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ you shall be saved, even as they.

The conclusion was sent to the Gentiles as follows:

Act 15:28-29  For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;  That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.

The Gentiles were already doing what Jesus required and the above reply was a reinforcement to stay away from the religious practices of the day so they would not have Jesus identified with these practices.

God’s Grace has freed you from the burden of The Law!

The next passage to examine is as follows:

Col 2:14-16  Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;  And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.  Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:

The ordinances against you were contained in The Law as these were the only ones God had given to mankind at that time.  Jesus negated their effect on you at the cross so that you were no longer affected by the legal requirements contained in them.  As a result the moral, dietary and religious requirements of the Law were no longer applicable to you as you are now under God’s Grace and He alone is your guide now in these things through His holy spirit (based on the principles revealed by Jesus in The Bible).

What is required is now summarised in 1 Jn 13:34-35 (the Golden Law of Love) namely, to love others as God Loves them so that you show God’s type of love to others in all you do.  You have The Holy Spirit in you to guide you now so that you do not need a set of rules (which The Mosaic Law is).

The emphasis is on being led by The Spirit so that you will not do what is wrong by showing a lack of love to another or God.

God’s Grace negated the Law and gave you The Holy Spirit to help you live as He now requires you to live.

Next, the rules of men are considered as is found in church and denominational guidelines as well as interpretations of The Bible which have no Biblical content to support them.

Col 2:20-22  Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances,  (Touch not; taste not; handle not;  Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?

The rules of man are not of eternal significance, neither are they incorrect application of The Bible, as they have no have no Biblical basis (unless they contradict The Bible in some way).  These rules of men will all pass away.  They actually result in legalism so that Grace is suppressed or done away with and the people placed in bondage of some degree.

Grace is not a licence to sin but a reminder that Jesus has dealt with the consequences of sin so that you no longer have to kill innocent animals to die in your place or follow rules and regulations to be acceptable to God.  God’s Grace accepts you as you are (in Jesus) and builds on that.

It is by His Grace you are able to be saved through faith and not anything you have to do except accept Jesus for who He is as Lord and Saviour and then for what He has done and obey Him out of love and thankfulness.

The Burden of The Law

Mat 11:28-30: this passage is as follows:

(KJV)  Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

MSG)  “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest.

(KJV)  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

The burden Jesus was talking about was the law and that which Satan put on them through it.  People struggled under the burden of it and Jesus was offering them a new way to relate to God based on is teachings (light) that would free them from this.  So Jesus was offering the life He offers to all based on God’s Grace and Love which is opposite to the burdens of The Law.

A part of this is the giving to Jesus of your problems of following Him (trials) so that you don’t carry them ourselves and so that they can be dealt with By Him on your behalf.  The five steps are designed to help you in this.

Rewards

Rewards might be the only thing you earn but even then these are a result of His Grace.  A King does not have to reward a person for doing properly what they are supposed to do.

Believing God is a rewarder is also a requirement of faith.  If you did not believe there was a reward that made the Christian life worth living, then you would not try as hard to live it as you should.

The reward in Heb 11:6 is not an earthly reward but an eternal one.  It is eternal life in His presence with all the joy and benefits that come from this.  If you did not believe this was to happen to you there would be no reason to live a Godly life as there would be nothing after death to live it for.  There would be little reason for showing love or Grace to others if there was no benefit for doing this.

Blessings

A blessing is a benefit.  It is a sign of His Grace towards you.  It may be prophesied as coming or having occurred.  As God is the giver of every good gift or thing mankind can only ask God to bless or declare it is coming or has occurred.

If a man is to provide the blessings then God will provide it to him to give as part of the stewardship that man has of the things of God.

It will be a physical blessing as that is all that a person can give to another.

If it is for services rendered then it is payment for service and not a Blessing.  Blessings are part of God’s Grace and when you bless another as God instructs you to bless them you are showing the Grace of God.

An example is where God says: “I will bless them that bless you“

A person has been blessed by another person and God says He will bless the giver of the person blessing even though He does not need too.

All true blessings come from God and a man can only ask God to release blessings.  Remember it says every good and perfect gift comes from The Father and true blessings are perfect gifts from God.

God’s Blessings

Luk 11:11-13  If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?   Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?  If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

My mentor, and myself would quote the first two verses and say to God “where is the blessings you promised?”  Until Jesus rebuked Him and said this verse refers to the Holy Spirit you have already.  By keeping on quoting  it you are saying you have not received the Holy Spirit yet.

Why was the Holy Spirit referred to here and not blessings?

Because God had already promised these all throughout the Old Testament and did not need to restate these promises.  They were known to the Jews.  Here was given the promise of something better.  The Holy Spirit (God Himself) living in them.

So when you ask God where the blessings are, quote His promises but not that verse.

Why does God withhold His blessings?

He has the right to as King, but does not do so carelessly or frivolously.  Normally there are five reasons:

You are out of His perfect will for you so He cannot bless you as He wants (usually because of unrepented sin, unforgiveness or bitterness).

He is doing it to mature you

So you will appreciate it better when it is given later

The person who was suppose to bless you is not listening to God so they are not doing what God wants them to do for you.

You will not use the blessing at the moment as He wants you to use it.

Another reason you do not see God’s blessing is that you are not spiritually aware enough to recognize it.  Remember, God blesses you in so many ways before you even look for them:

You have life

A relationship with Him

Heaven is your Home

The Holy Spirit is in you

God meets all the needs that you do not realize you require to exists

God also said to me you do not understand what it means to have The king’s favour.  When kings had absolute power, the king’s favour meant you prospered in the kingdom.  So if you are in a proper relationship with God He will prosper you in line with prosperity as it is given in His Kingdom and not as the world sees it.  The world is the kingdom of His enemy so He will not prosper you in a way to benefit His enemy.

This means you need to look for God’s prosperity in accordance with the principles of His Kingdom which have to do with eternal rewards and meeting your needs to live and serve Him there and not to have a party, wealth or a good time.  He does promise to meet your needs to do His work.  But all rewards of value are in His Kingdom and not on earth.

Blessings and their financing

When you Bless a person you are only giving out of the abundance God has given you above what you need to survive and do His work, not the abundance over luxuries you do not need.  You are only a steward of what you have and blessing another is giving them the stewardship of something you were once steward over.  This has to be after providing for the needs of your family.  I repeat needs and not luxuries.

1 Chron 29:14 But who am I, and what is my people, that you should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have you given thee.

This giving is not sacrificial as you use what is given for your family to survive as God wants them too.  It is given out of the abundance of what God has given you above what you need to live.

This means that sacrificial giving is out of the things your family needs to live.  This is unscriptural.

1 Tim 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

God looks at the heart and not the sacrifice.  He looks at the reason for giving not the gift.  His sacrifice is not from the deprivation of worldly goods but of the selfish desires and pleasure as give your self to Him for His purposes.  He does not need things as He owns them all.  He desires you.  That is how you bless God by being a ‘living sacrifice’, putting Him before yourself in all things.

Ps 51: 16-17 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

Rom 12:1  1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

When you give to another you should be only doing what God tells you because if it is not the Will of God it may actually do harm to them and remove a chance for God to bless them and you.  It wold also not be a sign of His Grace but of your reason.

Many give out of guilt and thus actually harm the receiver who relies on their giving and not God to provide.  Hence the Western world has done great disservice to the poorer countries making them rely on their giving rather than the countries own supply of good or helping them to become self sufficient and thus making these countries vulnerable when the west can no longer give to them.  They have, by this, made these countries rely on the western nations and not on their country and thus these people are not prepare to survive in the disasters and famines that are to come.  Instead of learning to rely on God, they rely on the West and thus God cannot do His work of miraculous provision in their country (Grace).  I am not talking about disasters but normal events that cause hardship or problems in a country.

This wrong giving also deprives the poor in the West from receiving aid they should have from the churches and so the Love of God is not shown as it should, even to their own brother and sister followers of Jesus.

Emergency or disaster relief are different but even then it should not come out of what you need to keep and feed your family and should also be guided by The Holy Spirit.

By this wrongful giving to theses poor countries Satan has robbed many of blessings both in the West and in these poorer countries as well as hindering The Grace of God being expressed as He desires it to be and along with needs for the structure to maintain denominationalism has tied up much money that could have helped the poor, the needy and brought many to Jesus.

When you bless make certain it is what God wants in the way God wants it done.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.