1. My goal is to change, if possible, the outlook of your
a. to help you set your hope more perfectly on the Grace
b. that has been brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ (1 Pet. 1:13);
1. so that you will determine to make your calling and election sure (2 Pet. 1:10);
2. so that you will never again treat Christianity
a. and your living of the Christian live,
b. in any haphazard or guesswork pattern.
2. Our lesson this morning is entitled, “Let Us Have Grace.”
1. The word “Grace” conveys wonderful hope and comfort to the
a. It is a word that the apostle Paul loved to use.
b. Nearly every epistle that he wrote begins and ends
c. with mention of this word grace.
2. In Hebrews 12:28, the writer says, “Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot
be moved, LET US HAVE GRACE, whereby we may serve God acceptably
with reverence and godly fear.”
3. Let us have Grace!
4. You know, we hear a great deal of teaching about grace.
a. Not all of it is sound, not all of it is meaningful, not all of it is relevant.
b. So what does this word GRACE actually mean?
c. How is it used in the N. T. scriptures?
d. What important things should we keep in mind concerning "grace"?
5. For the next few moments we intend to focus our attention on this wonderful word,
a. and its relationship to the Christian.
b. Let us have Grace!
THE DEFINITION OF "GRACE"
A. Grace can be defined as that which gives joy, pleasure, delight...
1. This is the original idea of the Greek word "charis"
2. It is used in the N.T. in this way in reference to SPEECH...
a. The words of Jesus were spoken with grace (Luke 4:22).
b. The words of the Christian are to also impart grace to the hearers (Eph 4:29; Col 4:6).
B. Grace can also be defined as good-will, lovingkindness, favor...
1. In this way, it is used of the kindness of a master towards his inferiors or servants;
a. And especially of God towards men.
b. THAYER points out that "CHARIS contains the idea
c. of kindness which bestows upon one what he has not deserved."
2. The NT writers use CHARIS preeminently of that kindness
a. by which God bestows favors even upon the ill-deserving,
b. and grants to sinners the pardon of their offenses,
c. and gives them eternal salvation through Christ (Eph 2:5).
1. It is this particular definition of grace
2. that prompts us to think of it most often as "unmerited favor."
C. Grace can be defined as a spiritual state in which one enjoys God's favor...
1. When one accepts God's grace, they are in a "state of grace."
2. Paul in Romans 5:1-2 and Peter in 1 Peter 5:12
3. both discuss Grace as a condition in which we stand.
D. Grace is also defined as an expression of gratitude for favor bestowed...
1. In the English vernacular we normally say
a. “I Thank God or I Thank the Lord for such and such.”
b. In 1 Timothy 1:12, Paul said, “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord...”
2. This expression of gratitude is what is meant
a. when people ask someone to "say grace"
b. before eating a meal.
3. These four definitions are the main ways
a. the word GRACE is used in the NT.
b. So the Hebrew writer says, Let us Have Grace!
c. But why?
1. Well first of all, because we are saved by grace!
a. Salvation is first, foremost, and always a matter of grace! (Eph 2:5-8).
b. God doesn't owe us anything.
1. As sinners, what we deserve is eternal damnation (Rom 3:23; 6:23).
2. Salvation is a gift, which God in lovingkindness offers (Rom 6:23b).
3. Paul wrote (Read Tit 3:3-7).
2. No matter what God may call upon us to do in order to receive His grace;
a. when we do those things (believe, repent, confess Jesus, and be baptized),
b. in no way can we ever say that we earn or merit salvation...
c. We are still "unworthy servants" (Luke 17:10).
3. We must forever remember that only by God's grace is salvation possible!
4. When the Hebrew writer said, Let us Have Grace, he knew secondly, that
1. God's grace requires holy living!
a. Some people reason that since we are saved by grace,
b. we are free to do whatever we wish...
2. They reason that the grace of God will cover all their immorality,
a. all their baseness in life.
b. They feel that they can do whatsoever they are big enough to do,
c. and then get down on their knees and say, “God forgive me.”
3. Yet Paul wrote that the "grace of God...teaches us" (Tit 2:11-13).
a. It teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts...
b. To live soberly, righteously and godly in this present age....
1. To continue looking for the blessed hope
2. and glorious appearing of Jesus Christ.
4. If grace isn't teaching you that, then someone is teaching you wrong about grace.
5. As he continues in Titus 2:14, Paul explains why Jesus in grace gave Himself for us...
a. He died to redeem us from every lawless deed
b. He died to purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.
6. Loved ones, the unmerited favor of God is no excuse to go on sinning!
7. And another thing, God's grace surely requires Holy Living,
a. but even our holy living requires God's grace!
b. For any of us to live "soberly, righteously and godly" requires the grace of God.
c. We cannot do it on our own,
“For it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps” (Jer 10 :23).
8. But with God's help we can live as He requires!
a. He works in us to do His good will (Phil 2:12-13).
b. By His strength we can do all the things He desires of us (Phil 4:13).
9. So the Hebrew writer says, Let us Have Grace, because thirdly
1. We must grow in grace!
a. This is especially true if we are going to live holy lives.
b. Peter commands us to grow in grace (2 Pet 3:18).
1. Dear brothers or sisters, it is not enough
2. just to experience God's grace in forgiving our sins.
a. God has so much more to share with us,
b. both in this life and the life to come.
c. Paul wrote (Read Eph 2:7).
2. This explains Paul's references to Grace in his salutations and benedictions.
3. But how do we grow in Grace?
a. We can grow in grace by Heeding the Word of God (Acts 20:32);
b. And by drawing near to God in prayer (Heb 4:16).
4. Now brethren, we would be unwise to end this lesson without a warning...
1. Loved ones, we can receive God's grace in vain!
a. Paul pleaded with the Corinthians that they might not receive God's grace in vain
(2 Cor 6:1).
b. Thus, having received God's grace, it is possible for it to have been in vain!
2. You ask how?
a. Well one way is by seeking justification for sin elsewhere.
b. Paul told the Galatians, “Ye are fallen from grace” (Gal 5:4).
1. In the immediate context, Paul had reference to the Law of Moses.
2. But if we seek to be justified by any system of salvation by works alone,
3. we too will fall from grace!
3. Secondly, we will have received God's grace in vain
a. if we use it as an excuse for licentiousness or lasciviousness (Read Jude 4).
b. These were using grace as an excuse for shameless behavior.
c. And yet we have seen that God's grace requires holy living (Tit 2:11-14).
4. Thirdly, we will have received God's grace in vain
a. if we sin willful and refuse to repent,
b. thereby despising the Spirit of grace (Heb 10:26-31).
1. For such a person there no longer remains a sacrifice of sin!
2. Only a fearful expectation of judgment.
5. Why? Because through such willful and impenitent sin
a. one tramples the Son of God underfoot
b. and counts the blood of the covenant,
1. that is, he counts the saving blood of Jesus as a common thing.
2. He insults the Spirit of grace.
1. By way of invitation, let us ask a question...
2. Do you know that the two most heinous crimes in all the world
a. have to do with grace?
b. This thing that is such a marvel and such a wonder.
3. The evidence of God's grace is seen in thousands of ways,
a. but most of all in the giving of His beloved Son (Rom. 3:24-25).
“For by grace are we saved through faith” (Eph. 2:8).
b. By grace are we justified (Tit. 3:7).
1. And yet, grace is the source of the two most heinous crimes
2. in the calendar of crimes.
4. The first crime is that a person will frustrate or spurn the grace of God. AMEN?
a. Paul said, “I do not frustrate the grace of God” (Gal. 2:21).
b. Oh, that God almighty will extend to man His mercy and say,
“Come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I'll give you rest (Matt. 11:28).
5. I'm ready to except you;
a. and I'll be your God, and you can be my people (Rev. 21:3).
b. I'll provide the blood of my only begotten Son
c. as a propitiation for your sins (1 John 2:11-2).
6. God the Father tells us all this,
a. and yet a person will just sit back with a callused heart,
b. listening but doing nothing about it.
1. They know what they should do to obey God,
2. but yet they won't do it.
7. You know, we think of murder; we think of adultery;
a. we think of 1001 immoralities.
b. But let me tell you that when you sit down there day in and day out;
1. hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ,
2. the Gospel of your salvation (Eph. 1:13);
a. and having been extended the mercy and grace of God;
b. and then you do nothing about it.
8. You are committing a crime far worst than murder;
a. far worst than adultery will ever be!
b. For to spurn or reject the grace of God
c. is to slap God right across the face!
9. Do you think He would have allowed His Son to be killed for nothing?
a. Jesus suffered for you leaving you an example,
b. that you should follow in His steps (1 Pet. 2:21).
10. Even though He was a Son,
a. He learned obedience through the things He suffered,
b. and being made perfect
1. He became the author of eternal salvation
2. unto all them that obey Him (Heb. 5:8-9).
11. Why then don't you obey God?
a. Don't you believe Jesus is the son of God?
b. Aren't you willing to confess Him.
1. Then why not now repent and be baptized...
2. And live for Jesus even unto death (Rev. 2:10)!
1. The second and even more heinous crime than the first,
a. is that those who have been enlightened,
b. and have accepted the grace of God;
1. those who have tasted the heavenly gift,
2. and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit;
a. and have tasted the good word of God;
b. And the powers of the world to come (Heb. 6:4-6).
2. And then they fall away;
a. they turn back to the weak and beggarly elements of the world (Gal. 4:9; Col. 2:8).
b. They bring shame and is disgrace
c. to the God who called us by His riches and mercy.
3. Their lives become a living monument to the fact
a. that they are not really Christians;
b. that they are not really practicing the things they believe.
4. These people will face a more stricter judgment
a. than the murderers and adulterers
b. and all the criminals in our institutions.
5. For judgment will first being at the house of God (1 Pet. 4:17).
a. It will begin with those who have brought shame and dishonor
b. to the cross of Christ,
1. and have crucified to themselves to Son of God afresh,
2. and put him to an open shame (Heb. 6:6).
6. Don't you forget it for a moment Loved ones!
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked” (Gal. 6:7).
7. Those people who bring reproach on the grace of God
a. and say: “Ahhha, He'll always forgive, so I can do what I like.”
b. “I can turn into the depths of sin again as a Christian,
c. and I know that He'll always forgive.”
8. Let me tell you this:
a. God will always forgive the penitent sinner (Acts 8:22).
b. But unless you repent of your sins,
1. there is no grace in Heaven or on earth
2. that can purge you of your sins.
9. God commands you to repent or perish (Acts 17:30; Luke 13:3).
10. And you know, the time comes when you and I
a. can dabble in sin to the point that we can't come back;
b. we can pass that point of no return.
1. And all the wonder and all the glory of God;
2. and all the message of the cross,
3. cannot call us back to repentance.
1. To those of you who are faithful,
a. who continue to stand firm in the Grace of God...
b. let me say this:
2. The greatest grace of God is yet to come!
a. Do we realize that?
b. The apostle John said (READ 1 John 3:1-2).
3. Brethren, it has not yet been made manifest
a. what God's grace has in store for His faithful children.
b. We are the children of God,
c. and it doth not yet appear what we shall be!
1. But thank God we know that we will be like Him!
2. For one day we will see Him as He is.
1. Loved ones, what a terrible thing it would be, to have received
God's grace in vain!
a. To have received God's grace at one point,
b. But then to make it all vain (useless)
1. But it is just as terrible not to have received it at all;
2. Or having received it, not to grow in it!
2. So I encourage you all, in the words of the writer of Hebrews:
"looking diligently lest any man fall short of the grace of God." (Heb 12:15).
"let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear
"For it is a good thing that the heart be established by grace..." (Heb 13:9).
"Grace be with you all. Amen" (Heb 13:25).
3. Friend, have you received the wonderful grace of God in your life?
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