Grace – Part 4
“‘Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given.’” (John 1:16 NIV)
Some will say that now that we’re Christians, we no longer have to ask God for anything, because we have all that we need in Jesus Christ. We have been saved by grace, and therefore, we have peace with God. And that is true. But why was the apostle Paul still expressing a desire in his letters for the believers to have grace and peace from God? Further, some of the prayers in his other New Testament letters are about God doing even more in the lives of the believers. This means that we can be Christians and still be lacking in the grace that God wants us to have; and in the peace God wants us to have.
Are we Christians if we have repented and accepted Jesus’ atonement for our sins? Yes, we are. Have our sins been forgiven? Yes. Do we, therefore, have peace with God? Yes, but are there still rivers of grace and resultant peace that we might be missing out on? Yes! That’s why the apostle said, “I want you to have more grace and more peace,” in letter after letter to the believers.
Do you know that there are different levels of grace and peace in people’s lives? There are some Christians who have received so much grace from the Lord that they’re more mature than others. They’re not rocked by every wind that comes by. It has nothing to do with what’s inside us in the natural. Whoever has more grace is going to have more peace; and that person is going to be kinder and more loving than another Christian might be. The person might not ever hold a microphone or sing a solo, but they could be a more mature Christian than someone who is more visible in the church. Why? They have just learned to receive— that’s all.
In fact, Christianity is not about doing anything. It’s about receiving everything. With what resources or ability am I going to do anything if I haven’t received those resources or that ability from the Lord first? As the Bible says, “What do you have that you didn’t receive from God?” Can I be more patient without having God give me more grace to be patient? The fact is that I don’t have the equipment to do anything; or else God would have said, “You don’t need grace.”
So, really, the secret of the more mature Christian is not their IQ or their education; it’s just that they have learned how to receive more grace. They’re constantly leaning on God.
To be continued...
Read John 1:14-18.