Grace is often defined as unmerited favor or receiving what we don’t deserve. While that may be true, the depth and origin of grace goes much deeper. The source of grace is found only in the person of Jesus Christ. He is the very essence of grace and the reality is that grace can’t be found outside of Jesus. He is grace personified.
“For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).
When grace appeared, it was Jesus who appeared. The Living Word became flesh and dwelt among the people of earth. Grace was manifested to appear for all to see, making salvation available to the world. The surprising contrast is found when we begin to compare law to grace. Whereas the law came through Moses, grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ. Don’t skim over this, it’s a cornerstone of the gospel.
“For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace” (Romans 6:14).
Our justification and righteousness comes as a gift by faith in Christ, apart from the works of the law (see Romans 3:21-28). The law that came through Moses was part of the first covenant God made with the Israelites. Those of us who are Gentiles and not part of the Jewish race were not invited into that covenant. The law required the Jewish people to keep all 613 commands and statutes perfectly without fail. However, nobody ever made it across the finish line. This is because the law was not given to improve behavior or make one acceptable to God. It was given to show that nobody could do it. In other words, it was guaranteed to fail. In order to solve this dilemma, a new covenant would be needed to replace the previous one. Enter Jesus Christ into the picture.
Since he could swear by no one greater, God would solve the problem by making a covenant with himself. This agreement is not like the first one nor does it involve you or me, but this time it would be an arrangement between Father and Son. Human inconsistency would not be able to mess up or fail in this covenant because the entire testament would hinge on one Person—Jesus Christ. We were brought into the covenant by being placed into Christ, so instead of God relating to us through our good or bad deeds, it is now based upon the finished work of Jesus Christ.
As found in Hebrews 7:22 (NASB): “…Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.”
This is an everlasting covenant secured by the blood that was shed for all of mankind where God would remember sins no more. It’s not about you and me. It’s the grace guarantee.
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