Grace from Jesus Christ versus Common Grace



"Mark 16:15 preach the gospel to every creature. Matthew 28:20 Teaching them to observe (do) all things whatsoever I (Jesus Christ) have commanded: Revelation 22:13 I am Alpha and Omega .. 14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, .. they .. have right to the tree of life, and .. enter .. the city."

I am a retired pastor of the Church of God (Tennessee).
My name is Isaac Livingston. I am from Neyyoor India.

Grace is, that God himself works in a person converting the person to holiness and perfection. We cannot challenge whether this person can live a holy and perfect life, since it is God who works to make this person holy and perfect. This is actual grace.

If we love and obey God with reverential fear, we will be made born of God with his seed abiding in us, and we will overcome all sins.

Please find the transcript of this message below.

 

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1. What is the Grace that we do have?

Our topic is: "Grace from the Lord Jesus Christ versus the common grace." So, let us compare bible grace, with grace among professing Christians. If a friend asks us how things are, we may respond; by the grace of God, I am doing fine. If we bought a house, got a better job, hit a lottery, or such good things, we say; it is by the grace of God. If we are in good health, happy and satisfied, we say that it is by his grace. So, all good things are by the grace of God. This is a good testimony for us, we show that we are not ashamed of Jesus Christ, and we are proud of ourselves. If we go through hard times, or a calamity struck, or an unfortunate thing happened, we may wonder what happened to the grace of God. So, good things are by grace, and bad things are, lack of grace. Let us look at the another side of this. By the grace of God, we are prosperous, healthy, our children are smart, and so on. But, atheists, non-Christians, and worldly Christians are also prosperous, healthy, their children are smart, and so on. So, they must also have the grace of God, We are not jealous; but the catch is this: We are saved by the grace of God. Seeing that they have grace, they must have been saved also, by the same grace. So, atheists, ungodly people, and worldly Christians are also saved, because they also have the grace of God. So, those who do well here on earth, it is by the grace of God, will also inherit heaven, since salvation is by grace. But, the unfortunate ones, who do not have grace, who suffer in this world for lack of grace, cannot go to heaven either, because they do not have grace. So, rich people, who are doing well by the grace of God, would go to heaven, and poor beggars, who does not have grace, suffer here and would go to hell. But it did not happen that way. The Rich Man went to hell and Lazarus went to heaven. In "Luke 16:25, Abraham said, (to the rich man) Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented." So, the rich man received the good things, but not grace, and the poor man, along with the sufferings, sickness, and poverty, had received grace to endure them. The disciples and followers of Jesus Christ have received grace in order to endure persecutions, tribulations, and poverty. So, our understanding about grace is very erroneous. Yet we profess and ride on this grace, thinking that we are godly people. But we are ignorant. Let us study what true grace is.

2. What is the true Grace of God ?

So, what we think as grace, is not grace. Then, what is grace? In 2 Corinthians 12:9 Paul says, "he (Jesus Christ) said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." In a way Paul says here; thank God I am weak, and so the power of God comes in me and makes me perfect. So, grace is the power of Christ that makes weak believers to be perfectly strong. "Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." So, we must come to Jesus to receive grace in the time of need. If we do, God may give us power; then the power of Christ, which is the grace of God, will make us perfectly strong, when we are week, and fulfill the need whatever it may be. So, as and when we need to overcome temptation, we must run to Jesus Christ to receive his grace. "Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. 21 I do not frustrate the grace of God:" Apostle Paul did not frustrate grace, how? He has died to self by being crucified with Christ; it is a figure of speech and not actual, and by faith he had Jesus Christ live Paul's life. This is grace. But, if a person does not try to overcome sins, instead enjoys them, he will not find himself weak fighting against sin. He does not need grace. "Romans 5:21 sin hath reigned unto death,". But church people are learned to chant; 'we are saved by grace', as they are walking their way of sin to hell. One more very important aspect of Grace is this. 1 Corinthians 15:10 says: "But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me." We must notice two points in this verse. 1) Grace converts a person from being a religious fanatic to an obedient servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. 2) Grace makes a person work abundantly for God. So, if we have not been converted from religiosity to godliness, and if we do not work diligently for God and for his righteousness; we do not have the grace of God. If we work for our church, denomination, organization, or a person; instead of serving Jesus Christ, who is God, it is evident that we do not have grace. Hebrews 12:28 says: "... let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:" So, if we have grace, we will have reverential fear towards Jesus Christ, who is God in the Omnipotent Spirit. If we take Jesus Christ ordinarily, it is proof that we do not have grace. Grace will reveal Jesus Christ to us, and we will have reverence and godly fear toward him. If we do not have reverence and fear towards the Lord Jesus Christ, we neither know him, nor have his Spirit, nor have his grace.

3. Turning Grace into Lasciviousness

God's grace will not help people to commit sin, but it will destroy sin. "Jude 1:4 .. there are certain men crept in unawares (servants of the devil sneaked in), who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, (they will surely be condemned) ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness (they use the name grace to commit lust)." These preachers will burn in the lake of fire. Romans 6 says: "14) sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 15) What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 16) Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 22) But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life." If we are under grace, sin will have no control over us. If we take orders from God and do them, we are under grace, the devil cannot touch us. But people don't want to be under grace but want to do their loving sins. Then, the devil will take over them. It is one or the other; we will be either under God or under the devil. What then? Shall we sin? ... God forbid: these words indicate that we can still sin if we desire to sin, even after we have received grace. But, if we do sin, we will become servants to sin, and not to grace. If we are servants to sin, we will lose grace, and the end will be eternal death.

4. Sin reigns to death, Grace reigns to Life

"Romans 5:17 ... much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ... 21 as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord." So, as Christ gives us his grace, he rules us with his power and see that we overcome. Or, we may say that God's grace rules over us. If grace rules over us, the proof is that we will live righteously. Then we will receive eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord. But, sin controls or rules a person unto eternal death that is hell. Grace rules a person through righteousness unto eternal life. Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Not only grace is the power of God, Jesus Christ himself is grace, teaching us and having fellowship with us as we live a godly life here.

5. How can We receive Grace?

Jesus Christ is the person who gives grace. So, for us Christians, who take Jesus Christ for granted, grace is automatic. So, we all have grace. This is where we all make a big mistake. We all think that we have grace; but none of us has grace. The gift of grace is given only to godly people, who obeys him. If you have no intention to become sinless, you do not need grace, and you will never receive Grace. Psalm 84:11 says: "... the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly." Here we see that if we walk uprightly, God gives us grace. 1 Peter 5 says: "5) Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. 6) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:" James 4 says: "6) But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. 7) Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." Proverbs 3:34 says: "... he giveth grace unto the lowly." Here, the grace of God is given only to humble followers, who submit themselves to God. So, resist the devil, humble yourself, even before your elders, and to truthful servants of God; and walk righteously; to receive grace. Then, you will receive grace. John 1:16 says, "And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." When the name of Jesus is mentioned, don't take things for granted. Grace comes of his fullness. Jesus Christ is here with us in his Spirit. Have you ever filled with his Spirit in the fullness of his presence anytime? If you have, then you have received grace, and filled again for more grace. If not, try to be filled with Jesus Christ, who is God in the Omnipotent Spirit. We need his Spirit, Grace, and Power, to inherit his kingdom. So, go for it.

Thank you, God bless you.

Note: If any point needs explanation, OR, if you find an error according to scripture,
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