Rev. E. Anderson
These are but points to ponder that will initiate a greater comprehending of God’s mind and procedures. He desires that there should be a knowing of His sovereign plans and purposes so that life, ministry and service will be enriched and enhanced by His input. There is a revelation that His “thoughts and ways” are infinitely superior to ours – Isaiah 55:8, 9. We need to know and embrace them so that we might be able to achieve and succeed according to His desire and determinations. God bless you in your quest.
GOD’S THOUGHTS AND WAYS
THE WAY OF GRACE
READING Romans 5; John 1: 14-16
A SPECIFIC REVELATION: The God of the Bible is the God of grace and all of His ways are gracious ways. In all of His revealings, He is disclosed as the very gracious God. It is highlighted as a major consideration throughout the Scriptures of truth. This is the image that stands out and shines forth and warrants our attention and respect and the fact that should truly switch us on to Him. A BEAUTIFUL DISPOSITION: It is a quality that is most attractive and winsome. It is defined as “elegance and beauty of movement, form, expression, or proportion; goodwill or favour.” It is the revelation of kindness and goodness in such a pleasing manner and measure that should not really fail to turn on to its manifestation and influence. David showed extreme grace to Mephibosheth when he was in a despised and desperate condition. He looked to have no future and was in a condition of utter physical weakness. His father’s friend was prepared to minister grace and raise him to a new level of life and prospect – 2 Samuel 9: 1. A MULTIPLE EXPRESSION: Because He is a God of grace this grace is discerned in all that He is and does and so is expressed in a bountiful fashion. It is not restricted to one person or thing. All of God’s creation and creatures live under the blessing of His nature and grace – Matt. 5: 45.
1. GRACE IS DEMONSTRATED IN SPITE OF EVIL PERPETRATED – Genesis 3
It would have been quite easy for God to wipe His hands off Adam and the human race in the light of their failure to honour and obey Him. He could have been most savage with them as they had thrown His love and kindness in His face and done their own thing. He was prepared to hold back and demonstrate a loving attitude towards them although he hated the evil done and offered a hope of restoration to His favour in sacred promise of redemption.
2. GRACE IS MANIFESTED TO THOSE WHO EXPRESS A WILL TO BELIEVE AND WALK IN THE WAYS OF GOD – Genesis 6
It was Noah, in an evil day and generation, who ‘found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” –v8. There was so much wantonness and wickedness and this godly man hated what he saw and witness and was determined to believe and act differently. He was switched on to God and righteous living and this called for the manifestation of God’s grace in a special and significant way. Righteous conduct does move the heart and hand of God.
3. GRACE IS PREPARED TO ACT KINDLY WHEN OTHERS ARE JUDGEMENTAL AND HARD IN THEIR ATTITUDES – JOHN 8
Mankind, because of its fallen state and sinful nature does not reflect this becoming nature of God as revealed in this incident. The way of man usually Is of a condemnatory character and generally sees the evil practice of others but fails to take notice of its own spirit and action. This is illustrated in the teaching of Christ – Matt. 7:1-5. It is also seen in the attitude of the Jewish people towards the Gentiles. See Paul’s argument in Romans 2. Christ uncovers the wicked nature of the religious ones of His day in contrast to the quality character of God in dealing with the woman who had committed adultery. God’s purpose is not to really judge but save by His grace – John 3: 17
4. GRACE IS DECLARED IN ELECTING THOSE TO FAVOUR AND POSITION WHO ARE MOST UNDESERVING – ROMANS 5
The Gospel of Jesus Christ is all about the grace of God. It is a message of grace. It focuses attention on God loving a world of wicked sinners and showing His kindness to them is such a manner that through His Son He is prepared to suffer and die to atone for their sin in order to get them restored to His favour. The Cross is the means and measure by which He is to switch people on to His immeasurable grace – Romans 5:8; John 3:16. All men deserve judgment and being eternally banished from God but He has taken decisive action against that and makes it possible for the undeserving to experience His beautiful and bountiful favour.
5. GRACE IS DISCLOSED IN THE FACT THAT GOD GIVES ACCESS INTO HIS PRESENCE AND THE BLESSINGS OF HIS GOODNESS – ROMAN 5:1;
The fact of the matter is, God has not simply forgiven man of his enormous and atrocious sins, He gives him the right and privilege to become a member of His family, and to have the prerogative of access into His blessed presence, to be owned and favoured by Him in incredible ways. He gives those who respond to Him an “ACCESS” card into His rich love and favour. He wants those who belong to Him to have their lives loaded with His blessings. He has saved them in order that He might express His continual love and blessing to them. Just as David brought Mephibosheth into his home and family, it was that he might enjoy his face and continual provisions and blessing – c.f. John 1: 16.
6. GRACE IS SH0WN TO BE OF A PERMANENT ORDER AND IS TO BE ADMINISTERED THROUGHOUT COUNTLESS AGES – EPHESIANS 2
This is one verse that discloses the real nature and intention of God – v8. Grace is not something that God is short of. It is to be exercised and exemplified on an eternal basis and front. There is nothing temporary about God or His exceeding goodness. It is measureless and it is eternal. Those who receive the grace of God in salvation and sonship are assured that this is to be made known in a greater way in the coming ages and that there will be no cessation of it. What God has begun in Christ is to widen and deepen in the passing eternal ages.
7. GRACE IS THE BENEDICTION THAT IS IS FLOW RIGHT AT THE OUTSET AND THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE OF DIVINE RELATIONSHIP – EPHESIANS 1
The primary benediction that is existent in the New Testament upon all those who come into the family of God centres on ‘Grace.’ Nearly all the letters to the churches and believers commences on the note of grace – “Grace to you.” There is the apt reminder that it is all about God’s grace coming and continuing to come. It is apparent that it is the will of God that we should learn to know and live under this divine benediction. We should appropriate the truth and fact within in our daily living and association with Him. It is important not to miss out on His favour upon the whole of our living.
· How essential it is to meditate upon this qualitative aspect of God’s nature and rejoice in it at every level! It should be a source of inspiration and jubilation continually and one should not become simply accustomed to and familiar with it. Reflective measures must be adopted to muse of His unfailing kindness and love. · Further, we should also seek to be inspired with this same qualitative nature and spirit so that it becomes the hallmark of our lives. It will show how successful God has been in effecting the same in us through Christ Jesus our Lord.
“Oh let Thy grace inspire - My soul with strength divine,
And all my powers to Thee aspire And all my days be Thine.”