Author: Dr. Howard M Sarkela
Grace is the power at work that draws in those that have had a disregard for God yet, by His great love and mercy, are drawn to an encounter with the living God. A misconception normally accepted is that we find God, when in reality God was not in need of being found, for He was never lost or missing in the first place.
Mankind was lost, and it was God’s gift of Grace that has allowed for us to be found. It is during this time of grace, that we are drawn to believe. (See John 6:44). We cannot allow ourselves to entertain the thought that it was through our own strength, merit, or right that we have obtained our salvation. The fact is that our salvation is a result of a free gift, given to those that are enabled to believe through the manifestation of the gift of faith by grace. (See Eph. 2:8-10).
The atoning act of the cross at Calvary boggles the mind of man. And the resurrection induces man to ridicule it, outside of the revelation of the Holy Spirit. The fact is that the natural man sees the sacrifice of Jesus as total nonsense. As an act that is totally outside of human reasoning. It is an illogical even impossible act to the eyes of men.
But it is His Grace that allows us to penetrate into the revelation of the love of God towards humanity, and provides us the faith to accept and believe what is regarded in the world as the foolishness of the Gospel. Through this act, God has confounded the earthly wisdom of the wise, who are shielded by their unregenerate minds from understanding the simplicity of the Gospel.
We do not come to Christ through our own intellect, personal righteousness, or through any form of human ascent. In reality, it is we who are drawn by Him only. It is He that causes us to believe through His gift of faith by Grace. We cannot glory in our own salvation as if it was our work that caused it, for our only act should be that of appreciation of what He has done for us. There is only one who is worthy, only one who deserves all the glory, and only one to which all honor and praise is due, and His name is Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Praise Him!
His atoning sacrifice has made us righteous through the washing and cleansing of His sinless blood. Yet our righteousness is just a reflection of His righteousness. It is His divine righteousness, bestowed upon us through Him alone, that allows us to legally stand on His authority. As slaves to the sin of this world, it was His blood that paid the price for our freedom. A glorious and Holy transaction has taken place. We were literally purchased off of the slave market of sin. Through this act, He has made us heirs with the family of God, giving us the authority that is rightfully administered through our personal relationship in His Kingdom. God the Father, represented in Scripture as our Abba, or Daddy, sees us as His children, heirs and joint heirs with Jesus. By Grace, through Faith, we have been adopted into the family of God. and we now share a relationship with our Brother, the Firstborn, Jesus Christ. With the work of redemption completed at the cross of Calvary through His shed blood and resurrection from death, Jesus signaled to Satan and the world, “It is finished”. Oh what a glorious eternal victory.
Now blood bought Christians have the legal right to claim His authority when we pray (or) command in the name of Jesus. We can now operate in the authority of His Holy name by faith. We now have the authority and privilege of being called children of the King. We exchange our vestments for that of Royalty, clothed in privilege and authority by His grace. We walk transformed through the Holy Spirit, who counsels us and protects us. And we are provided, through His Grace, ministering angels that are alert to our commands for protection and guidance through the authority that was given to us in His Holy Name. Glory to God!
It is because of this that we should continually grow to be Christ like. This is what is represented when we speak of the fruit of the Spirit, Christ likeness. The more we become empty of ourselves, the more we are filled with Him. We are to continually search out His will for our lives, and then we should operate at the center of it. His thoughts should be our thoughts, and His ways, our ways by grace through faith.