Summary: Worldly favour is fickle, but divine favour, grace, is God's "I'm for you" attitude. Learn how to receive it and grow in it like Jesus
Favour is a fickle thing in the world.
In the Lion the witch and the wardrobe, there is a scene where Edmund is betraying his family. He is a King of Narnia, but doesn't know it. The evil Queen has offered him the chance to be a prince, if he brings the rest of the family to her. She wants to kill them all. So it's a great picture of the devil's schemes.
Edmund makes it to the Queen's castle and is met by Maugrim the chief of the secret police who says "Greetings favoured one of the Queen or not"
Favour in the world is a fickle thing - if you work hard enough for long enough some people will like you some of the time!
Politicians go in and out of favour all the time. The words "He has my complete support" is a kiss of death and the Minister will be sacked within days.
Divine favour is completely different.
It is totally undeserved and unmerited and is therefore not based on our performance at all.
It's God's "I'm for you" attitude. Did you know God is for you... God's for me - say it! Some of you might be feeling like Edmund right now. You are wondering whether you are favoured or not. Don't listen to Maugrim, the enemy. Listen to God and what He is saying.
Favour is the guarantee of His presence, the promise of His power, to accomplish His special purpose in and through your life.
When the mankind was still pretty new and their every inclination of the heart was evil. Gen 6:8 tells us "But Noah found favour with the Lord."
Joseph was a young man who went through decades of suffering and trials. Genesis 39:21 tells us "But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison." Moses was called by God to bring the people of Israel out of slavery and prayed back to God at one of the tough moments "Yet you have said, "I know you by name and you have also found favour in my sight." The later Samuel, we are told in 1 Sam 2:26, "Now the young man continued to grow both in stature and in favour with the Lord and also with man." David Acts 7:46 tells "found favour in the sight of God and asked to find a dwelling place for the God of Jacob".
Ruth found favour in Boaz's field and ended up going from poverty to supply, widowhood to marriage, childless to having a family and being part of the genealogy of Jesus
So there's a ton of divine favour under the Old Covenant - how much more is there going to be under the New covenant?!
Divine favour is your portion! Say it Divine favour is my portion.
So the angel of the Lord appears to Mary and says "Greeting O favoured on, the Lord is with you!"
She had no idea what that meant, so the angel says again "Do not be afraid Mary, for you have found favour with God."
She was so favoured! The mother of Jesus!
She had no idea what was happening. Didn't really understand - but she is willing to yield to God's power.
Interesting - ignorance asks for understanding, unbelief ask for proof.
So Jesus - God in the flesh is born. God and Man in perfect union. Born in the most humblest of circumstances as a boy. When he was twelve He was taken to temple for the Passover and left behind! In Luk 2:52 it tells us this "Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favour with God and man"
I can understand how Jesus would need to grow in favour with man - but God? But if Jesus needed to grow in favour with God, then boy do I! Amen?
Favour is the grace of God - the greek word for both is the same. So it's totally an undeserved gift. But just like grace it has measures and we can grow in the measure of favour as we can grow in grace.
God loves everybody the same. He loves... just as much as he loves me.
Grace is available to all who want it. Grace and favour start with ACCESS
We have free unblockable, unmerited access to the favour all ways! The sin barrier is permanently dealt with and we can always approach the throne of heaven with boldness and confidence.
Grace and favour are also about power - power to do the things that God wants us to do. Spiritual gifts are actually grace gifts. Grace given to do us to serve God. Favour is the same.
Eph4:7 tells us the risen Christ gives grace to every one as he apportions it.