The Grace of God: 2. The Grace of God

The fullness of God’s grace is beyond human appreciation, comprehension or full knowledge. The riches of His goodness cannot be expressed or described by mortal tongue. We can only attempt to describe it, and our best efforts will be a puny approximation. We can admire the beauty of divine grace, but we cannot really explore its depths. At best we can only stand in awe at what we see, and exclaim with the Apostle Paul:

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments and unfathomable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became his counselor? Or who has first given to him that it might be paid back to him again? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory for ever. Amen. (Rom. 11:33-36.)

Anyone who attempts to talk about God’s grace must begin, again with Paul, by confessing personal inadequacy for the task (2 Cor. 3:5). We are at best clay pots, entrusted with a priceless treasure (2 Cor. 4:7). Yet God can enable even clay pots to speak his word and glorify his name. “Our adequacy is from God” (2 Cor. 3:5). “We do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor. 4:5). The “surpassing greatness of the power” is from God and not from us (2 Cor. 4:7).

Scripture reveals much about the grace of God, and we will profit from studying what it reveals. It is possible that sermon subjects, like ladies’ fashions or teenagers’ music, go in cycles. Perhaps we have neglected the grace of God — to our own great loss and harm — because those before us, or around us, neglected man’s responsibility to obey God. Whatever the reason, many sermons, conversations and class discussions these days seem to indicate a lack of basic appreciation for this central theme of the New Testament. Let us give some thought to what Scripture says about God’s grace.