Monday, February 29, 2016

Grace Upon Grace

In John 1: 16-18, John is declaring the result of the incarnation. John now declares that the fullness of grace contained in the divine logos has provided an infinite supply of blessing [grace] for believers. The word fullness suggests the abundance of the supply that Christ has. The idea is that of an unending supply of divine grace.

This lesson can impact your life by bringing to your realization and understanding that God’s grace is not merely available, but it is always showered upon the child of God in unceasing waves. God extends His grace in such a way that before one wave of grace is “used up” another wave of grace is already on its way supplying the needs of the child of God.

John now turns to the result of the incarnation of the Word. As he does his intent is to emphasize the source and the supply of God’s grace. Grace of course is that unmerited favor that brings blessing and joy to the child of God.

What is grace? Grace is that undeserved blessing that is freely given to human beings by God. The operation of grace is a deep mystery that is beyond our finite human understanding. Grace is an amazing concept! How many songs have been written about grace?

God is absolutely free in giving, bestowing, providing, and extending grace to his children. God is not obligated nor constrained by any inner necessity or external compulsion to give grace.

Why does John mention grace at this point in this gospel? As John dictates this gospel he is well aware of his audience. He more than likely builds on the Jewish thinking & understanding that is behind the phrase “steadfast love and faithfulness.” The idea of “hesed” and “emet” comes from Exodus 34:6 where God expresses a covenant of faithfulness toward his people.

According to John, God’s covenant faithfulness found its ultimate expression in the sending of his unique or one of a kind Son, Jesus Christ. This Son is the source of the never ending supply of God’s grace, his unmerited favor towards his children.

Let me remind you that verse 14 described the glory of God revealed in the incarnate Word as full grace and truth. It carries the idea of being filled up as opposed to being empty. It also carries the idea of complete as opposed to lacking enough.

So, John emphasizes that the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ is absolutely full of grace and that he is not lacking in any supply of grace or truth. As we look at the reception of grace, I want you to see two tremendously important ideas, the Source and the Supply of grace

“And from his fullness…”

John picks up from this idea and makes a very bold statement; it is from this sufficient supply that we as believers receive grace. John now declares that the fullness of grace contained in the divine logos has provided an abundance of blessing for believers. John demonstrates very clearly that Christ is the source of the believer’s blessings.

Why is it necessary for John to emphasize this? Remember he is writing to Jews who would immediately balk at the idea of any blessing coming to them from any source other than Jehovah.

To say that the Word having been made flesh is the source of grace or blessing would have been blasphemous to them. John wants his readers to see clearly that no supply of grace, no part of blessing, and ultimately no part of salvation is to be sought after anywhere else.

The Word, or Christ, contains the abundance of all that is needed. It is the Word that is the fountain of blessing, the fountain of grace, and the fountain of life.

It is in Christ all these things are to be found and all these things are revealed, laid bare before John’s readers, and by the way before us also, so that we can clearly see them. The reason or purpose that we need to see this is so that we do not seek blessings anywhere outside of Christ.

The Holy Spirit reveals to us that we are utterly destitute and completely empty in and of ourselves.

• He reveals to us our utter failure to live up to God’s standards.
• He reveals to us our utmost spiritual poverty

So, be warned! If you forsake Christ and seek to satisfy yourself apart from Christ your search will be in vain. You will never be fulfilled, you never be happy, and you will never be content.

No comments: