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The Pastor's Blog

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Nobody’s counting… except me. In the past months I’ve written the stories of ninety-nine recipients of God’s grace. Ninety-nine…

There are plenty of other Biblical characters that I’ve not mentioned, folks like Lydia, the Apostle Paul’s first Christian convert on European soil, or Titus and Timothy, young pastors who extended Paul’s mission of church-planting and Gospel penetration. I haven’t mentioned several Old Testament greats like Rachel, Rebecca, Samuel, Ezra, Nehemiah, or Esther.

Instead, we considered God’s grace that was clearly evident in the lives of the blatantly unworthy. Barabbas, a criminal sentenced to die, was set free, only because Jesus was condemned in his place. Abraham, a man reared in a pagan home in a pagan land, an aging man without a descendent, was promised an immense family in a new land and became known as the father of the faithful. Moses, a runaway murderer was graciously chosen to lead God’s people out of bondage in Egypt and David, an adulterer and murderer, was given the unique designation, “a man after God’s own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14).

We’ve also examined the helpless, the feeble, the weak, and the weary, folks like the paraplegic who sat at the Beautiful Gate at Jerusalem’s temple. “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6, NKJV). Can you imagine? Legs as thin as toothpicks, suddenly found strength to rise, to jump, to dance! That’s grace.

Bartimaeus, blind from birth, sat on the curb outside of Jericho, crying out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” (Mark 10:47). At the spoken command of Jesus, grace was showered upon Bartimaeus. “Immediately he could see and began to follow Jesus on the road” (Mark 10:52).

The stone-cold corpse of Lazarus lay dead in the grave for four long days. Dead men don’t hear and dead men don’t rise and walk, but Jesus lovingly, powerfully, graciously commanded, “Lazarus, come forth!” (John 11:43). He did. Jesus transformed the dead to life. Happy hallelujah!

But, are these just stories like Little Red Riding Hood and Jack and the Beans Stalk? No. The Bible records them, and I believe them. Jonah, after three days in the belly of the great fish, preached to the repentant people of Nineveh. Noah, built a boat, and Daniel spent the night in a lion’s den.

And, get this… God’s grace is meant for whosoever! For you, for me, and “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord”(Romans 10:13, KJV).

All are sinners (Romans 3:23). All sinners deserve the death penalty (Romans 6:23), and yet, in His abundant grace, Jesus demonstrated His love for us by going to Calvary (Romans 5:8). “He was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification. Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 4:25–5:1). By His act of grace and power, sinners are justified, declared righteous, and thus, have peace with a Holy God!

God’s grace is never earned. It’s unmerited, undeserved, unwarranted, but God is abundantly gracious! Happy hallelujah!


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