GRACE and Peace
Grace and peace to you in the name of God
our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ.
If you are a truster of the finished work of our
Christ Jesus: GRACE to you from God the Father
and His Son Jesus Christ. Grace! Relax and trust
It’s not up to you to earn your own righteousness!
Your life is hidden with Jesus and one day,
because of His grace, you and He will be
revealed in perfect glory.
You desperately needed a Savior because
you were never going to be good enough and
Jesus was everything you needed!
Ever wonder why we struggle so much to wrap our minds and hearts around the gospel of perfect grace? Perhaps because we are so busy teaching each other everything else while the example set before us was to share the simple gospel with every believer every single day. We've reserved the gospel for the "lost" and we're losing our faith because of it.
Have you ever noticed how we, as Christians, will take one solitary verse in Scripture and believe it so deeply that we build entire denominations around it, name our churches after it and teach it a dozen times a year to anyone who will listen? Have you also ever wondered why there are verses that repeat the same theme, almost word for word, literally dozens of times in our Scriptures and we never use them? Never teach them? Never see them on bumper stickers or use them to name our programs or have them at the heads of our websites? Such is the dilemma of this phrase that was once used every time one believer in Jesus' ability to save met another, and now is rarely used at all.
In all my study of the New Testament, I’ve never seen a
phrase used more frequently than
“Grace and peace to you.”
What is this strange greeting that our apostles and early believers used so often? What does it mean? Why don’t we embrace it? And what are we missing by ignoring it?
Grace: A virtue coming from God.
Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus.
This greeting was packed with powerful,
important, precious meaning. This simple greeting
explained and reminded the brethren of the gospel in
its entirety. And they used it every single day
to strengthen each other’s faith, to remind each other
of the finished work of our Lord, to encourage
each other to believe in the gospel of grace,
and to unify the body of Christ.
By saying “Grace to you…” I am greeting you with a statement that immediately reminds you what binds us together in love: THE GOSPEL OF GRACE. I am communicating to you that you and I count on being righteous with God because of His grace in sending us His Son. I am reminding myself that it’s foolish to buy what’s been given to me for free. I am reminding you that because of grace, you don’t have to obey your way into God’s presence. I am reminding us that the immeasurable grace of Jesus mediated a way for us to stand perfectly holy and boldly approach the throne.
Grace to you.
Our apostles and young believers started every conversation reminding each other what they had in common, what bound them together, what made them who they were. Grace.
This unifying greeting seems foreign to us,
not just because it’s wordy or proper, but because,
if we’re honest, we don’t meditate daily on the grace
that makes us right with God and connects
us with an eternal connection to the brethren.
A more honest conversation starter for us is
“Where do you go to church?” “What ministry
are you involved in?” “Who is your pastor?”
We find unity, sadly, in what WE do.
They found unity in what CHRIST JESUS did.
May we understand the greeting of grace so we better understand the gospel of grace.
Grace is what makes us who we are. Grace is what connects us. Grace is what sets us apart from the lesser gods and pretend religions. Grace is what gives us hope. Grace is what knits us together in love. Grace is our gospel and I love you enough to remind you everyday.
Grace and peace to you.
But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of God's grace. ~ Our Apostle Paul