Thursday, May 12, 2016

It's All Grace

God's grace doesn't "make up the difference." It's not that we've got a certain amount of ability to do good, and grace is meant to make up for whatever we're lacking or wherever we fall short. You will not find a definition or description of grace that is anywhere close to that in the scriptures!

The Apostle Paul didn't say, "I put forth my best effort and grace covered the rest." No, Paul chucked aside all his best (see Phil 3:4-11), counting it all as loss, and counting it all as bull dung, so that he could know Christ alone. When it came to living out our daily life and living out our various ministries, Paul said it was all grace. He said that his holiness and sincerity were from God, "not according to worldly wisdom but according to God's grace." (2 Cor 1:12).

Paul talked about his great accomplishments and abundant work that he'd done, but he said, "yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me." "By the grace of God I am what I am." (1 Cor 15:10) Our gifts and callings aren't our own, but solely the result of God's grace. (Rom 12:6). Our ministry/serving is "according to the gift of God's grace" and "the working of His power." (Eph 3:7).

If your ministry is about you and your wonderful work "for God," give it up! Don't be so foolish. "Neither is He served by human hands, as if He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all life and breath and all things." (Acts 17:25). It is God who works in you (Phil 2:13). God began a good work in you and God will be faithful to complete it! (Phil 1:6).


  1. Awesome!! Too many times I feel like I'm not getting it right or something and then I hear something like this again. I basically told my girlfriend I was tired to which she responded you're weary which reminded me of a scripture in Galatians. I wouldn't say that fits me exactly but I definitely am tired of hearing messages to do better when I already know Paul called it all crap which is actually a nice translation I think for the stronger language I believe he used. I'm just interested in Christ's righteousness not my own. Or as Robert Capon would put it: why do we want to put the Pharisee's speech in the sinner's pocket referring to the one who just said God be merciful to me a sinner. Thanks for the all the scriptures to back up this idea. I'd only considered one I think along with other scriptures of course. But these make the idea even more clear.

  2. Yep indeed, it's all about Christ's righteousness that we've received as a gift, not our own abilities to produce a righteous lifestyle. This post here is actually based on an article I wrote a few years ago, with a few more examples and scriptures. It's here if you're interested.

  3. You've got a lot of good stuff so I couldn't not read this one. I never really thought about those scriptures that say according to the Spirit. That also reminds me of one that says "not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit". Also I was reading a book called "the heavenly man" about a Chinese Christian and he said he was doing too much and not resting and he got in trouble from it I think and ended up in jail. He was studying the scriptures but not from rest and I think he was saying we should do things like that out of joy not because we're obligated but he ended up jail but God was still good and used that. Anyway I think it goes to show how much we need Him and His mercy otherwise we're trying to fulfill the law yet falling short and we're totally messing it up by breaking it in just one point and thus the whole thing as James puts it. And thanks for the other post.