August 13, 2017

Word of His Grace – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

“And now I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.” (Acts 20:32)

Paul was leaving his beloved brothers in the faith, likely never to see them again. He would not be there to chase away the wolves, but they would not be left without protection.

God would always be with them. Paul uses the same expression Jesus used on the cross when He placed His spirit into His Fathers hands. To “commend” to God is to place them into His care and keeping.

And, they had God’s Word. Was that enough? If they would fill themselves with it, they would be strong. It had the power to protect them, to strengthen them, to build them up, to guarantee their inheritance, to secure their place among all those who are sanctified, set apart for God’s service. Wow! Yes, that is enough, “that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (II Timothy 3:17).

Paul had done all he could do. Now they would be able to stand on their own, by the power of God administered through the “word of His grace.”

It is interesting and instructive to consider the expressions the Holy Spirit uses to describe the crucial role and the powers of God’s word.

Jesus was the expression of the will of God and He, Himself, is called “the Word of life (I John 1:1).

Christians at Philippi were told that they, themselves, “appear as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life,” (Philippians 2:15-16).

Jesus explains the role of Scripture in the parable of the sower, describing it as theword of the kingdom,(Matthew 13:19).

Paul speaks of the nearness of God’s Word when he called it, theword of faith, which we preach,” (Romans 10:8).

Paul established the fact that Christians today are the “children of promise,” by means of theword of promise, (Romans 9:9).

Paul speaks of the marvelous work of God, reconciling the world to Himself,” which our Calvinistic friends attribute to the direct operation of the Holy Spirit, relegating the Word to relative irrelevance. Paul indicates it accomplished by means of the “word of reconciliation” (II Corinthians 5:19).

Similarly, asserting the role of “the word of truth,” in salvation, he equates it with “the gospel of your salvation;” (Ephesians 1:13).

The writer of Hebrews referred to the admonitions of his inspired epistle as the “word of exhortation,” (Hebrews 13:22).

The Lord Jesus described the faithful church at Philadelphia as those who had “kept My word, and have not denied My name.” He promised them “Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing,” (Revelation 3:10).

The metaphor of our text is also found when Paul was “speaking boldly with reliance upon the Lord, who was testifying to the word of His grace, granting that signs and wonders be done by their hands.” (Acts 14:3).

Grace is the grand theme of the New Testament. It’s great significance warped the pendulum thinking of Calvin and Luther, who swung from the Catholic error of salvation by works, all the way past the truth to salvation without responsible accountability to conditions specified in the Word. Would that their followers, and all Christians today, learn to appreciate the great significance, the central, primary role of “the word of His grace.”

 

 

 

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