Friday, December 14, 2018

PF Bulletin: The Power of God’s Grace

February 16, 2015 by  
Filed under Articles, God's Character

Soon after Lot separates from Abram and settles in the Jordan River Valley, four kings from the East collapse on Canaan, ravaging its cities and taking both persons and provisions for spoils. Lot is taken captive during these raids. In response, Abram marshals a force of 318 men to pursue the four Eastern kings, rescuing Lot and defeating the enemy who had just cut a swath across the known world. This is, of course, an act of God indeed. Melchizedek says so:

–        “And blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand.(Gen. 14:20)

God is glorified for this act of providence, and rightly so. This is not the only time we see this kind of “unlikely” victory from God on behalf of his people. Why does God choose to act in this way, rather than, say, bringing tens of thousands of soldiers under Abram’s command? Wouldn’t that be more impressive? The answer to this question is clear, taken from the book of Judges and the story of Gideon’s defeat of the Midianites.

–        “And the Lord said to Gideon, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel claim glory for itself against Me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me(Judg. 7:2)

In many instances in the Old Testament, God chooses to work against seemingly insurmountable odds so that no one can question to whom the victory belongs. The same can be said about God’s plan for our salvation! Please consider Romans 3:

–        “…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;  for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.  Where then is boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith. For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.” (Rom. 3:23-28)

Christ was sacrificed by the Father so that he could remain perfectly just, while still providing an answer for the seemingly insurmountable problem of sin. Understanding God’s holiness, and the nature of sin, can anyone rightfully say that he or she has done anything sufficient to earn this great gift? Did the march around Jericho do anything to compromise the integrity of the city wall? God’s power and his righteousness is on display through his grace—the good Lord simply asks for our obedience.


– Seth Buchanan

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