Intro: Today is the 3rd message on grace.
Our new mission purpose statement: Presenting Jesus, the revelation of grace and truth that transforms lives.
“For the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:17
Note: Law came through a servant. Grace and truth came through the Son of God Himself. We have established that our foundation of being made right with God is and always has been by grace through faith.
I love the sign Esteban did on the front of our church windows. “If you could earn it, why did He have to die?” It answers the question that men must ask to begin to understand the grace of God. Either Jesus paid for all of your salvation, or you have to make up the difference.
Grace is so amazing that Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones said,
“If your preaching of the gospel of God's free grace in Jesus Christ does not provoke the charge from some of antinomianism, you're not preaching the gospel of the free grace of God in Jesus Christ.”
― D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
If when you teach about the grace of God your listeners don’t believe it’s too good to be true, you’re not teaching grace.
The gospel is not a balance of law and grace. Romans 11:6 reveals one will cancel out the other.
Under Law God said, “I will by no means clear the guilty. I will visit their sins upon the third and fourth generations.” Ex. 34:7
Under grace God said, “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and lawless deeds I will remember no more.” Heb. 8:12
Did God change? No. He is still the God of justice, but He satisfied His justice Himself through Jesus death on the cross.
The law is man centered: “You shall not have any other gods before Me. You shall not make graven images, you shall not take the Lord’s name, you shall not break the Sabbath.”
Grace is Jesus centered: “I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God and they shall be My people. I will be merciful. I will remember their sins no more.”
Under Law you were disqualified by disobedience.
Under Grace you are qualified by Jesus’ obedience.
Under law you made right when you did right.
Under grace you are made right when you believe right.
Review last week:
We need not fear if people are taught grace that they will not try to obey God and go off into sin.
“For sin shall not have dominion over you. For you are not under law but under grace.” Romans 6:14
ill. If someone says they are living under grace and the leave their wife for a mistress they are not under grace but under the dominion of sin! If sin is in dominion then you are not under grace! The revelation of Grace gives you to the power to break free from the cycle of sin.
We look at one of the Hebrew words for repentance which is Teshuvah. This Hebrew word shows the God’s definition is for repentance.
“Because of the cross (kindness, goodness of God), return to grace.”
When I sin I don’t run and hide from God unless I am living under Law. If I found revelation of Grace of God I run to Him. I confess “I can’t but You can.” Turning to the cross and finding grace for power over sin.
Ill. Jesus just finished sermon on Mount where He corrected the way the Pharisees had interpreted the Law of God. He put the Law of God back up to the high standard no man could keep. Then in chapter 8 He is coming down the mountain and meets a leper who was probably hiding out listening to Jesus preach. A leper was a man with a hopelessly incurable disease. He represents you and I being judged by the Law of God. The Law was intended to make you realize you are hopelessly and incurably diseased with sin. It is to bring you to your only hope – Jesus.
“Lord, If You are willing, You can make me clean.”
His statement reveals he does not know Jesus is grace and truth. It is where most of us live now. He knew by hearing of Jesus’ miracles that He could heal him. His question was not about Jesus ability. His question was about God’s willingness to help a sinner like him! His question reveals he does not know the love of God.
Knowing God’s love for you will make you strong and able to take bold chances with your life.
“The people who do know their God shall be strong, and carry out exploits.” Dan. 11:32
- Because Daniel knew the truth about God and what He is really like, he did many exploits. An angel addressed him as “O Daniel, a man greatly beloved.” Dan. 10:11 So one thing for sure! Daniel knew God greatly loved him. That gave him courage!
- The more you know God’s great love for you the less you fear!
Ill. King David. His name David means “the beloved of the Lord”. Every time he heard his name it was like God saying, “Remember who you are! You are the beloved of the Lord.” He became an awesome worshipper. He had a revelation of God before his time. He changed the way of worship from the Tabernacle of Moses to the Tabernacle of David.
David radically changed how to approach God because he had a revelation of the love of God. If you look at Tabernacle of Moses and compare to Tabernacle of David it was radically different.
- Moses Tab had outer court and furnishing but not David.
- Only high priests in holy place – Levites all minister before ark
- No instruments, singing, dancing, shouting – yet all in David’s.
- Daily animal sacrifices – no animal sacrifices after dedication.
The point is knowing God’s love and personally encountering grace of God changes everything. David did some radical sins. But he also experienced radical grace! “How blessed is the man whom the Lord will not impute iniquity.” Psalm 32:2. Paul like this and quoted it again in Romans 4:8 “Blessed is the man whom the Lord will never reckon sin to his account.”
David found grace before the new covenant was established.
Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord before NC established.
Abraham found grace by faith in OT time too. God said Moses found grace in His sight.
How do you find grace in the OT under the Law?
If you are not careful you will take John 1:17 to mean before Jesus, God only operated by law. But now in the New Covenant things have changed and it is all by grace. How wrong to see the OT was by law and the NT is by grace. The OT was certainly law focused and the NT is grace filled, true. But then you have to ask, did God change when Jesus came to earth? Has God always been gracious or did that change with Jesus?
“He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.” 2 Tim. 1:9
God has always been gracious but the full revelation of grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. The complete expression of grace and truth is in Jesus Himself.
Even though people in OT did not see Jesus as a human dying on the cross for them, they saw God’s strong grace and love for them providing the grace for them to be helped.
- Abraham said to Isaac – “God will provide Himself a ram sacrifice.” Not knowing any details how but He knew God is grace.
- Noah believed God would provide salvation through a way – later to be known as an ark. No details how but he knew God was gracious.
- David was a great sinner but He knew God’s radical grace. He wrote, “Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute sin.”
- Moses saw backside of God. What was that?
Bible says Moses spoke to God as a man face to face. Not a human body because God is invisible and Spirit.
Goodness – grace – merciful was the backside of God.
Moses revelation was the law of God. Romans declares the Law of God is holy therefore it is good. The Law of the Lord is perfect converting the soul. The Law reveals the holiness and righteousness of God. The end of the Law was what Moses saw as the backside of God, which God declared was Goodness, grace, and merciful. This Law brings us to the full and complete revelation of God in Jesus.
What does the face of God look like?
“For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of God IN THE FACE OF JESUS CHRIST.” 2 Cor. 4:6
How do we deal with sin in the church?
No one living in sin is living in grace! Sin is destructive. Those who insist on continuing to live in sin usually quit church because it is hard to keep sinning against a loving Savior. We do not take sin lightly. Everyone is welcome but when we see sin we point the sinner to the cross where their sins were punished. Go to Him and confess your weakness and ask for His grace to help you overcome. Keep on going even if you continue until you find grace.
“Let us come with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy AND FIND GRACE to help in time of need.”
How did Noah find grace? “Lord, I can’t but You can!”
How did David find grace after such sin? “Lord, I can’t but You can.
If Moses, who only had the revelation of the Law of God, saw the backside of God was goodness, grace, and mercy. What will you find in the face of Jesus? Grace and truth.
Ill. Woman caught in adultery brought to Jesus to be condemned.
She found grace that day. Do you think she said, “Boy that was close. I dodged that bullet, now I can go back to adultery!” She was so mesmerized by her encounter with grace and truth that she was changed forever! When you find grace at His throne you will repent instantly.
Ill. Like Zachaeus when Jesus came to his house. He was so moved by Jesus grace and love for him that he spontaneously stood up in front of family and friends and declared to Jesus, “Lord, half of my wealth I am giving to the poor and if I have cheated anyone I will repay them four times the amount I stole.” Jesus must have laughed and said, “salvation has come to this house today. This is the reason I came.
If people will come to God’s throne of grace today they will receive mercy and they can also find grace from him to be set free from any habit.
Concl: the greatest revival will be when people find the grace of God.