Under Grace & Ruled By Grace

John 1:14-17  And the Word became flesh, and tabernacled among us. And we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and of truth. John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, This was He of whom I spoke: He who comes after me has been before me, for He was preceding me.  And out of His fullness we all have received, and grace for graceFor the Law came through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

Most of us have will understand the term grace to speak of “unmerited or undeserved favour”

We understand that our salvation is a act of grace on God’s part as we have nothing within ourselves and nothing that we have done or can do that would put us in a position of deserving salvation…..in fact scripture tells us that we only deserve punishment.

This understanding of Grace is true and accurate but does not actually convey the full blessing of grace and we miss out on the true glory and power of God’s grace when we stop at just this definition.

In John 1:14-17 we learn some facts about grace.

  • We understand that Jesus Christ was FULL of Grace & Truth
  • We understand that Grace & Truth have a connection or a relationship
  • We understand that out of this FULLNESS of Grace & Truth we also receive Grace
  • We understand that the receiving of Grace & Truth is unique to us under the New Covenant and they come to us through Jesus Christ.

Therefore we are to be FULL of Grace

This is not limited to forgiveness, for we are to be FULL of Grace & Truth.

Does the term “Grace & Truth” provide us with any further understanding of this Grace.

(Zechariah 12:10 MKJV)  And I will pour on the house of David, and on the people of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of prayers. And they shall look on Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourns for his only son, and shall be bitter over Him, as the bitterness over the first-born.

(Hebrews 10:29 MKJV)  Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy of punishment, the one who has trampled the Son of God, and who has counted the blood of the covenant with which he was sanctified an unholy thing, and has insulted the Spirit of grace?

(John 14:17 MKJV)  the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive because it does not see Him nor know Him. But you know Him, for He dwells with you and shall be in you.

(John 15:26 MKJV)  And when the Comforter has come, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He shall testify of Me.

(John 16:13 MKJV)  However, when He, the Spirit of Truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth. For He shall not speak of Himself, but whatever He hears, He shall speak. And He will announce to you things to come.

(1 John 4:6 MKJV)  We are of God. He who knows God hears us. The one who is not of God does not hear us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

We can see therefore that Truth & Grace are united in their common link with the Spirit of God. When we receive the Spirit we receive the Spirit of GRACE & TRUTH.

And we are commanded to be FILLED

Eph 5:18  And do not be drunk with wine, in which is excess, but be filled with the Spirit

The scripture tells us that the law came through Moses but Grace and Truth came through Jesus Christ.

Yet we know that grace was available to the OT saints.

(Genesis 6:8 MKJV)  But Noah found grace in the eyes of Jehovah.

(Exodus 33:12 MKJV)  And Moses said to Jehovah, Behold, You say to me, Bring up this people. And You have not told me whom You will send with me. Yet You have said, I know you by name, and you have also found grace in My sight.

(Ezra 9:8 MKJV)  And now for a little time grace has been shown from Jehovah our God, to leave us a remnant to escape and to give us a nail in His holy place, so that our God may enlighten our eyes and give us a little life in our bondage.

Yet this grace was limited in its working amongst the people for is was a grace of unmerited favour but grace would abound much more in times to come and scripture promised a coming grace that would overshadow that grace of the OT.

(Zechariah 12:10 MKJV)  And I will pour on the house of David, and on the people of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of prayers. And they shall look on Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourns for his only son, and shall be bitter over Him, as the bitterness over the first-born.

This has reference to the outpouring of the Spirit and finds fulfilment in the promised New Covenant blessing.

Joel 2:28-34  And it shall be afterword, I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh. And your sons and your daughters shall prophesy; your old men shall dream dreams; your young men shall see visions. And also I will pour out My Spirit on the slaves and on the slave women in those days. Behold, the days come, says Jehovah, that I will cut a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah, not according to the covenant that I cut with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which covenant of Mine they broke, although I was a husband to them, says Jehovah; but this shall be the covenant that I will cut with the house of Israel: After those days, says Jehovah, I will put My Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. And they shall no more teach each man his neighbour and each man his brother, saying, Know Jehovah; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says Jehovah. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sins no more.

It was this great and wonderful New Covenant of Grace & Truth that was poured out and is still being poured out today in the heart and mind of every new soul that enters into covenant with our great and glorious Father.

Under the Old Covenant we were given the Law through Moses and this was so that sin might abound and grace “externally” abounded even more. God’s grace was seen in the forgiveness of David and many other OT men and women, on a national level it was displayed in the gracious longsuffering of God towards Israel

Rom 5:20-21  But the Law entered so that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound, so that as sin has reigned to death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Paul makes it very clear that were “sin reigns in the soul” it will lead to death.

We understand that in the life of the unbeliever “sin reigns” and eventually unto death.

But now under this New Covenant we not only receive the external manifestation of Grace in declaring us undeservedly righteous before God as David experienced and declared,

Rom 4:6-8  Even as David also says of the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness without works, saying, “Blessed are those whose lawlessnesses are forgiven, and whose sins are covered;   blessed is the man to whom the Lord will in no way impute sin.”

But now by the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of Grace & Truth reigns in us. This grace is in us and reigns unto righteousness.

Now we can see the futility of the teaching that being under Grace means that we are without law and can act with lawlessness and remain saved.

By the very implication of Grace reigning we will find ourselves living in truth because Grace reigns in our hearts.

We are UNDER grace – to be under means to be ruled – we are ruled by Grace – the Spirit of Grace & Truth reign and therefore we keep the law.

We stand in much better promises that those of the OT for then grace was an external experience but now Grace is a living, functioning dynamic part of our lives.

In Romans 6 Paul addresses the matter of those who misunderstand and limit the work of Grace so that a form of lawlessness is endorsed.

Rom 6:1-23  What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin so that grace may abound? Let it not be! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Do you not know that as many of us as were baptised into Jesus Christ were baptised into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father; even so we also should walk in newness of life.

For if we have been joined together in the likeness of His death, we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection; knowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him in order that the body of sin might be destroyed, that from now on we should not serve sin. For he who died has been justified from sin. But if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that when Christ was raised from the dead, He dies no more; death no longer has dominion over Him. For in that He died, He died to sin once; but in that He lives, He lives to God. 

Likewise count yourselves also to be truly dead to sin, but alive to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. Do not yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but yield yourselves to God, as one alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under Law, but under grace. 

What then? Shall we sin because we are not under Law, but under grace? Let it not be! Do you not know that to whom you yield yourselves as slaves for obedience, you are slaves to him whom you obey; whether it is of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness. But thanks be to our God that you were the slaves of sin, but you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. Then being made free from sin, you became the slaves of righteousness. I speak in the manner of men because of the weakness of your flesh; for as you have yielded your members as slaves to uncleanness, and to lawless act unto lawless act, even so now yield your members as slaves to righteousness unto holiness. For when you were the slaves of sin, you were free from righteousness.

What fruit did you have then in those things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now, being made free from sin, and having become slaves to God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Paul makes it clear that we being under Grace and ruled by Grace and therefore should be obedient to righteousness.

 Anyone who claims that they are under Grace and therefore can continue to live a life of sin by this very confession prove that they are NOT under Grace.

The rulership of Grace is the submission of the believer to the work of the Spirit, it is living by the Spirit.

We understand that the Spirit teaches us – He, the Spirit of Truth will teach us all things.

Joh 14:26  But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said to you.

The Spirit of Grace teaches us to live a holy life

Tit 2:11-12  For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that having denied ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live discreetly, righteously and godly, in this present world

We are taught by this indwelling grace to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts so that we can live holy lives.

But Grace does more than just teach us.

It enable and empowers us to live this life and do the works of God. Paul understood this so well.

Ephesians 3:78 Of this gospel I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effectual working of His power. This grace is given to me (who am less than the least of all saints) to preach the gospel of the unsearchable riches of Christ among the nations,

1Corinthians 15:9  For I am the least of the apostles and am not sufficient 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 which was toward me has not been without fruit, but I laboured more abundantly than all of them; yet not I, but the grace of God with me.

In this text we see that Paul considers himself to have worked harder than “all of them” but not of himself but by the “Grace” of God within him.

We will consider the connections between the Gifts of the Spirit and Grace

We do not need to equate Grace as being the same as the Spirit, but that grace is a outworking of the Spirit.

But the key is to understand that we have such a great blessing in the Grace of God. That we are taught by Grace, empowered by Grace and saved as an ultimate act of Grace of the part of the Father.

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