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Foundation Topic

What Is Grace?

Grace is kindness from God that we don’t deserve. It comes in a few forms. Saving
grace is the undeserved favor to stand in God’s presence no longer considered
guilty. Sustaining grace is the undeserved strength to get back up when you fall
weary or defeated. Sanctifying grace is the undeserved power to defeat your sin.

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The kindness of God

To experience grace is to experience God being good and kind to you.

Theme Verse
Ephesians 2:4-9 NIV

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.

Short Content

What Is Grace?

What is grace? Grace is when God shows us kindness we don’t deserve.  

We experience grace our whole lives, whether or not we put our faith in Jesus. We are constantly receiving good gifts from God (James 1:17), whether that’s the joy of family, good food to eat, a good night of sleep—really, anything good.   

Wait, but if I receive good things from God and that’s grace, that implies I don’t deserve good things from God. Exactly. Our hearts have been naturally inclined to rebel against God from infancy—from conception actually (Psalm 51:5). The Bible teaches us that “the hearts of the children of man are full of evil (Ecclesiastes 9:3). The Bible describes our condition as the living dead, physically alive, but severed from God our life source because of our sin (Ephesians 2:1-3).  

This might be hard to hear, but in order to understand grace we must first come to terms with what the Bible says about our nature—that we are sinners, who not only do bad things, but are bad at root. 

Therefore, whenever God does good to any person, he’s loving his enemies. We call this kind of grace common, because God everyone on the whole planet experiences it.   

That’s not the only kind of grace. God has shown grace to those who have put their faith in Jesus in a unique way. In Christ, God demonstrated his unfathomable kindness to us by actually absorbing himself the punishment we deserve for our sin—that’s why Jesus of Nazareth died on a cross. He was fully God, who put on human flesh, so that he could deal with our sin problem for us, in order to offer us the free gift of new life and a new relationship with God.  

We call this God’s saving grace because, through Christ, God showed us the undeserved and un-earnable kindness of rescuing us from the hell and wrath that we deserve for our sin. He did this to give us a new loving relationship with him.   

Now, even if you have believed in Jesus and experienced God’s saving graceyou will still experience the grace of God for the rest of your life in another way.  

When God saves you, he frees you from the punishment and the power of sin, but sin’s presence remains. You’re not perfect when God saves you. But in the moment you trust Jesus for salvation, a war begins as God, through his Holy Spirit, works to conform you to the image of Christ. We call this transformative kind work of God, sanctifying grace 

Through his sanctifying grace, God has chosen to express his love and kindness towards us by giving us the gift of his Holy Spirit. Not only has he declared us holy in his sight, but he has also started to transform us into people whose lives are increasingly marked by holiness, making us more and more like Jesus. 

God’s sanctifying grace towards us is both positional and progressive, we could say. 

Positional sanctification means that when we become a Christian, at the moment of our conversion, God graciously declared us holy and precious in his sight, not because of anything good in us but simply by virtue of the fact that we are, by his grace, now indwelled by his Holy Spirit and united to Christ and covered in his righteousness. In that moment, and ever since that moment, no matter how much we struggle and fail, when God looks at us, he sees us as holy.   

Our sanctification is not only positional. It’s also progressive. God doesn't just graciously declare us holy—he actually intends on making us holy! Having brought us into his fellowship and family, God wants to carry out his plans through us. But how in the world will we have the energy, the perseverance, the desire even, to carry out God’s will? Grace. God will himself strengthen and empower us—he will give us the undeserved gift of divine help. The Holy Spirit plays a crucial role in this process as he works in us to increasingly transform and empower our desires, our thoughts, and our actions. 

All of God’s kindness towards us is grace—undeserved favor. Although we are sinners who deserve only wrath, God’s grace has appeared to save us from our own badness and its eternal consequences, and to reconcile us to himself. Both in our salvation and our sanctification, God gives us the gift of knowing him and growing in him, which means that God himself is the ultimate gift that he gives us. His ultimate grace towards us is his commitment to never leave or forsake his sinful followers, but to hold our hands until the day when he removes the presence of sin entirely from our hearts.     

Grace is kindness we don’t deserve. It’s God doing for us what’s impossible for us to do on our own. It takes a great deal of humility to receive this free and undeserved gift. But God is more ready to give grace than we are ask for it. 

Why don’t you ask him for his grace today, in whatever measure you need? You have only to ask, for “he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble’” (James 4:6 ESV).  

by Bibles.net 

OPEN
YOUR BIBLE

What Is Common Grace?
Article: 5 Min

Give Thanks,
For the Lord
is Good

by Colin Smith at Unlocking the Bible

Verse
Matthew 5:44-45 ESV

But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Image

The Lord is good to all,
and his mercy
is over all
that he has made.

Psalm 145:9 ESV

Folk | Country Gospel

Color

by Ellie Holcomb
Article: 7 Min

What Is Common
Grace (And Why
Should We Care?)

by Derek J. Brown at Southern Equip

What Is Saving Grace?
Article: 10 Min

What Does
Grace Mean?

by Bibles.net

Praise & Worship

Speechless

by Steven Curtis Chapman
Video: 2 Min
Definition

Grace

The word grace is really just a shorthand way of speaking about the personal and loving kindness out of which, ultimately, God gives himself.

by Michael Reeves

Contemporary

It Is by Grace

by Sing Scripture
Messages: 43 Min

Grace Alone

by Dane Ortlund

Pop

Alive

by Big Daddy Weave
Image

God saved you
by his grace

when you believed.
And you can’t
take credit
for this;
it is a gift from God.

Ephesians 2:8 NLT
Messages: 27 Min

The Grace of God the Father

by H.B. Charles Jr. at Cutting It Straight

Chill & Relaxing

Grace That Is Greater

by Bart Millard

Folk | Country Gospel

Miraculous Salvation

by Tenielle Neda
Verse
1 Timothy 1:13-15 NIV

Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 

Article: 5 Min

God’s Grace
Is Mind-Blowing

by Phillip Holmes at Desiring God

Contemporary

Scandal of Grace

by Shane & Shane
Quote

Grace is favor
shown to people
who do not deserve
any favor at all…
We deserve nothing but hell.
If you think
you deserve heaven,
take it from me,
you are not a Christian.

Praise & Worship

Good and Gracious King

by CityAlight

Hymns

What Grace Is Mine

by Keith & Kristyn Getty
Article: 7 Min

Does Grace Still
Amaze You?

by Randy Alcorn at Desiring God

What Is Sustaining Grace?
Verse
Romans 5:1 ESV

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 

Verse
Titus 3:4-7 ESV

But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. 

Article: 10 Min

6 Types of Grace

by Paul David Tripp at His Blog

Infographic

G.R.A.C.E.

Discover what grace means in an acronym created by William Farley. Feel free to download this graphic onto your device and share it with others! 

Quote

Grace comes to us
“in the Beloved”
and nowhere else.
Grace is sap
from the true Vine,
warmth from the
true Light,
affection from the
true Bridegroom.
In other words,
when God gives us grace,
he gives us Christ.

Pop

Grace Upon Grace

by Matthew West
Messages: 44 Min

Grace Upon Grace

by Matt Chandler

Verse
John 1:14-15; 17 NIV

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth… Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 

Quote

Christ went more willingly
to the cross —
than we do to
the throne of grace.

Thomas Watson
Verse
Ephesians 1:7-8 ESV

In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 

Verse
Hebrews 4:16 ESV

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. 

Quote

The heart-conviction
of sin
is the way
grace prepares the heart

for more grace.

Rap

Lucky Ones

by Lecrae feat. Rudy Currence
Image

But he gives us more grace.
That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes
the proud
but shows favor
to the humble.”

James 4:6 NIV

70’s | 80’s | 90’s

Grace By Which I Stand

by Keith Green
What Is Sanctifying Grace?
Verse
Titus 2:11-14 ESV

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. 

Video: 7 Min
Quote

Surrender to Grace

by Martin Luther

For almost twenty years and I still feel the old clinging dirt of wanting to deal with God that I may contribute something, so that he will have to give me his grace in exchange for my holiness. And still I cannot get into my head that I should surrender myself completely to sheer grace.

See quote source
Image

You who are
trying to be
justified by the law
have been
alienated from Christ;
you have fallen
away from grace.

Galatians 5:4 NIV
Messages: 31 Min

The Gospel and Those People

by Josh Wredberg

Article: 7 Min

Is Grace Fair? 

by John MacArthur at Grace To You

Contemporary

Forgiven and Loved

by Jimmy Needham
Article: 7 Min

Grace-Paced Living
in a Burnout Culture

by David Murray at Desiring God

Hymns

Grace Greater

by Norton Hall Band
Image

But Grow
in the grace and knowledge
of our Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ.

2 Peter 3:18 ESV 
What Is Empowering Grace?
Verse
1 Corinthians 15:9-10 ESV

For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. 

by John Piper, 10 Min 
Verse
2 Corinthians 9:8 CSB

And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work. 

Video: 14 Min
Short Content

We Need Grace Day by Day

by D.L. Moody

A man can no more take in a supply of grace for the future than he can eat enough for the next six months, or take sufficient air into his lungs at one time to sustain life for a week. We must draw upon God’s boundless store of grace from day to day, as we need it.

See quote source
Verse
1 Corinthians 3:4-8 ESV

I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus, that in every way you were enriched in him in all speech and all knowledge—even as the testimony about Christ was confirmed among you—so that you are not lacking in any gift, as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will sustain you to the end, guiltless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 

by John Piper, 4 Min

Chill & Relaxing

Your Grace Is Sufficient

by Shane & Shane 
Verse
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 

Image

You then,
my child,
be strengthened
by the grace
that is in
Christ Jesus.

2 Timothy 2:1 ESV
Quote

What Is Our Final Word?

by Thomas Schreiner

Notice, the final word of Revelation is grace. And it is the final word of our lives too. As Paul said, by the grace of God I am what I am. The final word for us is grace. The final signature over our lives is grace. And the final word in the final book of the Bible is grace. May God’s grace strengthen us until the last day, until the day Jesus returns. 

See quote source
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