76. What is grace and does it affect a godly person’s behaviour?

The Biblical idea of grace is this. Grace is not only God’s unmerited favour towards us in forgiving us and cleansing us from sin, but it is also His enabling power to give us the strength not to return to our sins again. In Romans 3 verse 24 the Apostle Paul writes that ‘Being justified as a free gift freely given by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus.’ God’s grace is His unmerited favour – we don’t deserve it – and as recipients of such favour we become thankful people with love and compassion for others who need to receive the same free gift.

But God’s grace is not only his unmerited favour but it is also His enabling power to keep us from sinning. God does not want us to grovel in the dirt of filthy sin, but wants to empower us by His mighty Spirit to live victorious lives over sinful habits.

So grace is the key to enabling a follower of Jesus Christ to live an ever increasing godly life as he or she realises the power and potential to overcome sin, resist the Devil and minister in the power of the Spirit at whatever occupation or ministry God has called you to do.

This grace having been freely received by no merit of ourselves, should not allow us to become proud or arrogant. We should not be arrogant about things we are unable to do without God’s power to accomplish them. Boastful and proud people are not relying on the grace of God in their lives. So the disciple of Christ who relies on God’s grace to accomplish the work of the Kingdom of God through their lives will become a loving and gracious person because they will have introduced many others to the freedom of this grace. Humility and compassion are an outworking of God’s grace at work in someone’s life.