what is GRACE pt3, it has APPEARED

It has APPEARED to all men.

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.

(Eph 2:8)

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11)

There is no doubt that salvation is by GRACE. What’s at question is this; Is there something man must do to receive salvation through GRACE?

The answer is Yes!! Some would argue that Belief, Repentance, Confession, and Baptism are not required, but they wrest the scriptures. These are works God gave man to do to receive GRACE.

This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent” (John 6:29).

Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father” (1Thess 1:3).

What they should be teaching is that the APPEARING of GRACE is not by any work or goodness man has done. This is what the scriptures teach. “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1John 4:9-10).

What does it mean to us that GRACE has APPEARED?

When Christ came into the world to save us through His sacrifice, GRACE APPEARED making salvation AVAILABLE. “But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared” (Titus 3:4).

Without the Sacrifice of Christ, it is impossible for man to be saved, but the shed blood of Christ made it POSSIBLE for man to be saved. “When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible” (Matt 19:25-26; cf. Luke 18:27). It is impossible for man to invent his own means of salvation, and it’s impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to save, but with the blood of Christ it is POSSIBLE (Heb 10:4-10).

False teachers will tell you to “ask Jesus into your heart” to receive His Grace (which is not found anywhere in Scripture). The Bible tells a different story. We are to PUT ON CHRIST in water baptism through faith in His Grace.  “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ (Gal 3:26-27).

Faith in Jesus Christ, Repentance, Confession, and Baptism is how we ESCAPE CORRUPTION that is in the world. “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2Peter 1:4). Then we are to continue in His Grace (Acts 13:43). “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning” (2Peter 2:20). It’s possible to fall from Grace (Gal 5:4)

Some also teach that the GRACE of God only APPEARED to a select few individuals predetermined by God. This is the basis of Calvinism. Once again, the Scriptures teach something different. Grace APPEARS to ALL MEN (Titus 2:11). “But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many” (Rom 5:15). “Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth” (1Tim 2:4; cf. 2Pet 3:9). What God has predetermined is to save all those who receive the grace that has appeared through their obedience to the gospel by faith (2Thess 1:8-9).

The APPEARING of Grace provides the means of salvation, but it will not save those that reject it. Christ gave His life for our sins; this is the GRACE of God. When we obey the Gospel, we have the RIGHT to eternal life. “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Rev 22:14). “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name” (John 1:12). “Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue” (John 12:42). “Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian” (Acts 26:28). “And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked” (Acts 17:32).

For anyone to claim that our obedience to God, to the Gospel, to Jesus the Christ, or to the Holy Spirit inspired word of God is earning salvation then they have clearly not read the Bible. To obey God is never earning salvation, it has always been trusting in His Grace through God’s working. “Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead” (Col 2:12).

That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men” (Titus 3:7-8).

Grace has APPEARED. It was made available, making it possible for man to be saved when they faithfully put on Christ in baptism. By obeying the gospel, we escape the corruption that is in the world and anyone can do the same. When we obey the gospel, He gives us the right to the tree of life.

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11)

Spencer is a preacher for the church of Christ in Borger Texas, on the corner of Franklin & Juniper

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