Summary: God’s grace is the source of all our spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus. By grace He has saved us, secured us, and sustained us.
GRATEFUL FOR GRACE
Text: John 1: 17; I Cor.1: 4; I Cor.15: 10
Intro: I don’t know how often most of you have thought about the importance of God’s grace in your life. But lately, God is bringing me to the realization that God’s grace is the foundation stone upon which His plan for the ages rests. God’s plan is for the ultimate purpose of His glory, and His grace is the ultimate power of His plan.
Maybe we should define grace, in order to fully understand our subject more clearly. Someone has developed an acrostic on the word grace, which defines it as, God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. That definition speaks not merely of salvation, but the sum total of God’s dealings with us. It was through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross that God was able to show us His favor in every area of life.
One of my Bible college professors defined grace this way: “God’s unmerited favor in behalf of sinful and undeserving man.” This definition dovetails with the first definition of grace. Grace is simply a benefit received from another in spite of the meritless condition of the receiver.
Folks, the salvation of a lost soul is a magnificent display of God’s grace. There’s no doubt about it. But let us be quick to remember that everything this side of the grave is grace. Every breath you breathe is by grace. Every bite of food you put in your mouth is by God’s grace. Every step you take is by grace.
It is certainly befitting that our nation has set aside one day each year to give thanks for the abundant blessings bestowed upon us. This nation has overwhelmingly been the recipient of God’s grace. It is my prayer that our nation will never forget that fact.
I want us to examine some specific areas of God’s grace today. May we become so mindful of God’s goodness that we give Him thanks daily, and not merely once a year.
Theme: Let’s be grateful today for:
I. THE GRACE THAT HAS SAVED US
A. Grace Is God’s Means Of Redemption For Man.
1. It was grace that sent the Son of God to die in our place.
Isa.53: 4 “Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.”
2. It was grace that drew us to Christ.
John 6: 44a “No man can come to me, except the Father which sent me draw him…”
Rom.2: 4b “…the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance.”
3. It was grace that produced faith in our heart toward Christ.
Eph.1: 7 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;”
Eph.2: 8 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
B. Grace Is God’s Means Of Rescuing Man In Mercy.
1. Our condition was one of corruption.
Isa.64: 6a “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags…”
Jer.17: 9 “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”
2. Our condemnation was a foregone conclusion.
Ezek.18: 20a “The soul that sinneth, it shall die…”
Rom.6: 23a “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. God’s compassion was extended to all who by faith trusted Christ.
I Tim.2: 5 “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
6a Who gave himself a ransom for all…”
I Pet.3: 18 “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:”
NOTE: The fact is folks; you and I had nothing to offer God for our salvation. Richard Baxter explains it pretty plainly when he says:
As we paid nothing for God’s eternal love and nothing for the Son of His love, and nothing for His Spirit and our grace and faith, and nothing for our eternal rest...What an astonishing thought it will be to think of the unmeasurable difference between our deservings and our receivings. O, how free was all this love, and how free is this enjoyed glory...So then let “Deserved” be written on the floor of hell but [not] the door of heaven and life.