The Believer’s life is not developed by adopting a new way of living, but rather by a stepping away from the “pre-salvation” experience. So many times we try to incorporate our new creation into the framework of our old created being. Attempting to make room in our “old house” for the Christ centered “mansion” will only produce an ongoing dispute between the two “houses.” (Matthew 9:16, 17) The egress from our old created life is possible by the Grace of God. In other words, our life patterns come through the Grace of God which has been bestowed upon everyone who accepts the finished work of Jesus. Our thoughts, speech, and actions are motivated through God’s Grace. Failing to understand how Grace directs our lives will present “lukewarm” opportunities through our Christian journey.
The Apostle Paul, writing to the Roman Believers, stated that what he was saying to them through his letter was “through the grace given unto me.” (Romans 12:3) In the same letter he stated that they all had gifts “according to the grace that is given to us.” (Romans 12:6) The New Testament is full of examples of people expressing Truth through God’s Grace. To better understand Grace and its implications, we need to define Grace. The Greek word charis means, “The Divine influence on the heart and its reflection in that life.” When we experience God’s Grace, we become the personification of God. Our actions display God’s love, not with simple words but with expressions of compassion and understanding. Jesus was the living example of God’s Grace, evidenced by His inward affection shown through outward display. In the Gospel of Matthew, we see His compassion evidenced five times. Jesus felt the pain and concerns of the multitudes and responded with Grace. Grace is more than talk; it is a walk of love that is offered through our actions.
Believers do not initiate Grace; rather, they experience it by no action on their part. Receiving Grace changes the heart, which then renews the mind, which in turn initiates action. Passion has replaced compassion in so many lives. Christians are eager to defend positions or expose those of differing opinions instead of being an extension of God’s Grace. We are called upon to be “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” (James 1:19) If more people would understand this simple truth, Satan would have to adjust some of his tactical strategies against Believers.
Christians must stop trying to promote the Gospel through “religious” tactics. It is not by the letter of the Law, but by the Spirit. It is not tolerance, but compassion. It is understanding God’s Grace and living by and through that love! The more Believers show compassion, the sooner the world will be exposed to what God is really like!
HOMEWORK: List the ways you have shown Grace over the past week.