Grace and Mercy

January 8, 2016

“Goodness and mercy shall pursue me all the days of my life.”
(Psalm 23:6)

“God is able to make all grace abound toward you, so that you, always, having all sufficiency in all things, may abound unto every good work.” (2 Corinthians 9:8)

Two of the most beautiful words in the Bible are mercy and grace. The mercy of God, which is the unconditional love of God, withholds from us what we deserve, while the grace of God lavishes on us all kinds of blessings we do not deserve, accomplish, or achieve by our own efforts.

As we thank God for our blessings, at the top of the list we should thank Him for the mercy that withholds and the grace that bestows. The good news of the Gospel is that when He suffered on the cross for our sins, everything we deserved was laid upon Christ that we might have peace with God (Isaiah 53: 5, 6; 2 Corinthians 5:21).

If you want to grasp the meaning of these two words observe when and why they turn up in the Bible. Try to understand what we deserved and why. That will grow your appreciation of the mercy of God. Then investigate all that is bestowed upon us by the grace of God. As you find these two beautiful words throughout in the Bible, you will understand why I challenge you to pray with thanksgiving for: “The mercy that withholds and the grace that bestows.

Dick Woodward, 26 February 2009


ABOUNDING GRACE

June 20, 2014

“… God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound unto every good work.” (2 Corinthians 9:8 KJV)

I once heard Dr. A.W. Tozer preach on this text. After he read the verse with much inflection, he paused, shook his head and said, “Sometimes you cannot help but allow the thought that God oversold the product in the New Testament!” Of course, he went on to explain that God has not oversold the product. We tend to undersell the product because our access into God’s abounding grace is flawed.

Think of this with me for a moment. God is able to make all grace, (not just some grace), abound toward us, (not just trickle in our direction), that we, (he repeats that for emphasis meaning it’s not just for pastors or missionaries, but for every believer), always, (not just sometimes), may have all sufficiency, (not just some sufficiency), in all things, (not just some things), may abound, (not just go limping), unto every good work, (not just the ones we like.)

Once you have meditated on this verse a few times ask yourself this question, “True or false?”

If we answer that question as we should by saying it’s true, should that not give us the courage to tackle the things God is leading us to do that we know we cannot do? Are you doing anything that can only be explained by the supernatural reality that He is, only He can, and He did because you accessed His abounding grace?

Dick Woodward, 16 March 2010


Another Beautiful Word

August 31, 2012

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…” (Acts 1:8)

The mercy of God withholds what we deserve and the grace of God lavishes on us countless blessings we do not deserve.  As we appreciate what the mercy of God withholds and the grace of God bestows when we believe the Gospel, we should be filled with grateful worship of our gracious and merciful God.

When Jesus gave His Great Commission He instructed the disciples to wait until the power of the Holy Spirit came upon them before they obeyed His Commission (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1: 4, 5).  After that happened to them on the Day of Pentecost, we read:  “Great grace was upon them all” (Acts 4:33).  This use of the word “grace” means there is such a thing as the anointing, or the energizing unction of the Holy Spirit upon us as we serve Christ.  I am using the word in that sense when I tell people that His grace outweighs my challenges.

Paul was declaring this dimension of grace when he wrote: “God is able to make all grace abound toward you so that you, always, having all sufficiency in all things may abound unto every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8).  This is the most emphatic verse in the New Testament regarding the anointing and energizing grace of God.

Check out the superlatives he uses in this verse: All grace – abounding grace – each and every one of you  – he repeats all of you – all sufficiency – in all things – abounding unto every good work – always!  According to Paul we should all be able to make the claim that His grace outweighs our challenges!

Do you believe the grace of God can outweigh your challenges today?


A Great Dynamic

February 10, 2012

“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound unto every good work.”     (2 Corinthians 9:8)

The mercy of God withholds from us what we deserve and the grace of God bestows on us all kinds of wonderful blessings we do not deserve.  Grace is also the dynamic we must receive from God to do what He calls and leads us to do.  This is the most superlative verse about grace in the Bible.

It tells us that God is able to make all grace, not just some grace, abound toward us and not just trickle in our direction.  Then we may have all sufficiency, not just some sufficiency in all things, not just some things.  We are then equipped to abound, not just do our duty, as we do every good work He leads us to do, and not just the works we like to do, ALWAYS!

Twice in this verse Paul emphasizes the reality that this grace is for you – not just for the pastor or the missionary – but you!  Is this grace a reality in your journey of faith?

I once heard Dr. A. W. Tozer preach on this verse.  After he read the verse there was an eloquent pause and then he said, “Sometimes you cannot help but allow the thought that God oversold the product in the New Testament!” He then preached a powerful message challenging us to believe that God has not oversold His grace but we need to learn how to access His grace.

The hymn writer wrote, “The favor He shows and the joy He bestows are for those who will trust and obey…”

That is a good place to start.