What is Grace According to the Bible?
Grace is something I’ve often thought about and get asked about. is it really once saved always saved? Does everyone receive grace? What does grace even mean?
Ephesians gives us an excellent definition of what grace truly means. Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For it 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 boast.”
I love this verse because it gives a very clear definition of what grace is. It’s the unmerited eternal salvation we have through Jesus because we trust in Him. It’s a gift willingly given to us by God and not something we can earn through any sort of works. Grace is freely given to us, and it’s such a beautiful gift!
What Does the Old Testament Say About Grace?
The Old Testament is full of stories about God’s grace. In Genesis, He was gracious in providing for Abraham and Sarah when they were childless. Later on, Moses received God’s special favor as he led the Israelites out of Egypt. Even David – a man who had committed terrible sins – experienced God’s grace.
The Old Testament reminds us that no matter what we’ve done or how far we’ve strayed, God is still gracious and willing to forgive us. His grace never fails!
You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” 18 But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.
I love this verse because it reminds us that God is in control and it is through Him that we are able to produce anything. We can’t boast in our own strength, but rather we must remember that it is God who gives us the power to do good works. His grace is abundant.
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
The Lord is both compassionate and gracious. He is not swift to anger, but instead abounds in love and faithfulness. This is the kind of grace we can trust in and rely on every day.
As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
I think having children in your care is the best example of what it means to be compassionate and gracious. I often think about the grace and mercy shown to me by God and have to ask myself if I am showing the boys that example in our everyday interactions. Especially when they mess up.
I could list a dozen more verses on how God shows us grace in the Old Testament but this would become the world’s longest post. Let’s move on to the New Testament because I often get told that something is just a New Testament or an Old Testament principle and therefore does not apply to us today.
What Does the New Testament Say About Grace?
The New Testament has a lot of references to God’s grace. Maybe more so than the Old Testament.
Arguably the most popular verse comes from Ephesians.
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
This verse is important because it reminds us that salvation is not something we can earn. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus and the work He did on the cross. I love how this verse matches well with what Matthew said about our works. Matthew 5:16 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
We shine the light of Jesus through our good works and it is His grace that saves us. That’s such an amazing gift! I sometimes just sit in awe of that fact.
The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
I love this verse because back in Paul’s day, the view here was that the law increased so that more sins or trespasses could be covered. But this verse reminds us that where sin increased, grace increased all the more. It’s like an infinite supply of grace for us to tap into and use to live a life of eternal life through Jesus Christ. This verse reminds us that God’s grace and mercy surpass any sin, no matter how great.
Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
According to John, the covenant here with God is fulfilled in His truth and grace, aka Jesus. When we accept Jesus and come to Him, it is through Him that grace comes into our lives. We no longer need a law to abide by but rather receive grace in place of what was already given.
Again, the New Testament is full of verses about grace. I always recommend grabbing a concordance to help you get a more full picture of what God is thinking and feeling surrounding certain topics.
How Can We Show Grace In Our Lives Today?
How do we live out the grace so freely given to us? We must act like Jesus. We must show mercy and forgiveness to others, no matter what they’ve done. We must be people of grace and truth in our words and actions.
We can also extend grace in the form of not judging or criticizing others. We don’t have to be like the world around us by pointing out others’ mistakes but instead, we should be a shining light in such a dark world. That starts by being an example of grace to others and living a life marked by faith and love.
But we also have to remember that showing grace does not mean forgoing justice or discipline. We must still enforce laws and rules but always do so with kindness, mercy, and understanding.
Finally, we must spread the message of grace to others. Let them know that there’s a God who loves and forgives them no matter what their past may have been. It doesn’t matter how many times you may have failed —God’s grace is always available for us to access when we come to Him with humble hearts.
The Beauty of God’s Unconditional Love and Grace
The Bible is so filled with verses about God’s unconditional love and grace. Our world needs to know more about it, so let us be the people who spread that message! Let us show grace in our words and actions, always living out a life marked by faith and love.
God’s grace is so beautiful because it’s never-ending. No matter how many times we fail, God’s grace is always there to pick us up and help us go on. He loves and forgives us no matter what our past may have been. That kind of love is so incredible that words can’t do it justice.
We must continually seek out God’s grace and mercy to help us through each day. He promises that if you seek Him, you will find Him (Jeremiah 29:13). Let’s tap into His infinite supply of grace today so that we can live the life of faith God has called us to!
May the Lord bless you with an abundance of grace and mercy. Amen.
The Bible is truly an amazing book, filled with truths that can lead us to a life of joy, peace and grace. May we all take the time to get to know God’s word better, understanding more fully what His grace means for our lives today!