I really hope ya’ll get this, tonight. That grace is not just a one-time deal, and the reason that I want you to get it so badly is because… You know, the devil, he likes to come along and he likes to start saying, “mmmm.” Either he’ll point to one thing and he’ll say, “you’re doing really good in this area over here.” You know? “So, you’re earning God’s favor over here.” Or he’ll point over here and say, “mmhmm.
You messed up over here, so, you know, you’re going to have to work hard to kinda get back into good graces with God again.” And, he’ll try to steer us off of this path of grace. Sometimes he’s successful at it. You know, I’m not a perfect person either, so I need to be reminded about this all the time. But what happens when he does that is we start to think that somehow we can earn this grace. You know? Somehow we can do enough to either be worthy of it or to earn it in the first place. If you look at the definition of grace, it is unmerited favor. Unmerited means it’s someone that we can’t earn, we don’t deserve, we can’t work hard enough to get, and the way that we receive it is simply through belief. And I’m doing my best tonight to get ya’ll to look at this from another perspective, and the reason is because, like I said, I think we can get the concepts down easy.
I think we can understand the concepts, and we can even know the concepts, but that doesn’t mean we’re always waking up in the morning and living in light of the truth. It doesn’t mean we’re always waking up in the morning and saying, “I’m awake today, I’m alive today, I’m here today because of the grace of God. I get to go to school today, or I get to go do this or that today because of the grace of God. I get to be a new person today because of the grace of God. I get to look ahead at my future and not despair and have hope because of the grace of God. I get to walk through this situation—whatever it is—no matter how hard it might feel in the moment. I get to walk through this knowing that God still loves me, knowing that God still has a plan for me, know that He’s going to do something good with this because of the grace of God.” I’m really not…you know, the question I’m not asking tonight is…I’m not asking: have you understood the concept of grace? I’m asking, has the grace of God melted your heart? Has it changed who you are on the inside? This is one of my all-time favorite verses.
It’s John 6:28-29. “Therefore they said to Him, ‘What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘This is the work of God…'” He’s saying, “this is it. This is it. Listen to Me. I’m going to spill the beans right now. This is it.” “‘This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.'” He’s saying, “you might have thought I was about to list off all these rules and regulations and laws or all these things that I expect of you.” But He says, “I want you to believe.” And the reason I believe that Jesus is saying that is because, when we really understand His grace, when we really believe in His grace—not just know it as a concept—but when we really say, “wow.
Look at what His grace did for me. Look at righteousness that I get to have because of His grace—there’s no possibility of me ever having apart from His grace. Look at it. Look how amazing this gift is.” He understands that when we truly believe that, it’s going to change who we are on the inside. It’s going to begin to transform us. And He knows that, man, if we’re working at this list of rules and laws apart from grace, we’re never going to be able to fulfill it.
We’re never going to be able to do it. We’re never going to be enough, but what’s amazing is that His grace is enough for us. When we really get it, when we really understand it, and it really sinks into our hearts, it begins to change us. Then it makes these things a whole lot easier to do. Grace is the reason we can put everything on the table. It’s the reason we can put that table out in front of God. We can put everything on it and then we can say, “God, I’ve done these things, but…these good things over here, but I understand I can only do that because of Your grace.” Then we can say, “God, I did these other things, and I am so sorry. I messed up with these things.” And then God reminds us, “There’s grace for that. I still have grace for that.” .
Most of us have heard of the concept of God’s grace. Most of us have the idea of grace down, but grace is more than just an idea. When we truly receive grace with truth, it becomes the method through which God changes us and makes us more like Jesus.
Listen to the full sermon: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_J6loZUe5A
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