Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given.
—John 1:16-17 NIV
Out of the fullness of Jesus, we have received grace in place of grace already given. What does this mean? What is this “grace already given” of which John speaks? It is the law given through Moses. And that law had requirements which had to be met. The grace, which replaced the “grace already given” and fulfilled the requirement of the law, came through Jesus Christ at Calvary. And that grace, which is greater than the law or “grace already given”, is now His truth.
So many of us strive to live up to the letter of the law without the freedom the grace of Jesus offers. That freedom is not a license to sin, but a license of receive forgiveness that changes how we see God. We are told God loves us and gave His life for us, but we don’t grasp the passion of that grace. We strive to fulfill what He has already fulfilled. God continually attempts to breathe His grace into our strife. But we can never live up to the impossible expectation that He has NOT placed upon us. Jesus wipes off the false expectations of our lives, and offer us a new slate to begin the process.
Grace is not something to be used and manipulated! It is Jesus, himself, loving us in His sacrifice. A forgiving and loving God accepts us just where we are—offers His grace to us at this very moment—not when we shape up and get things right! When we yield to His loving grace, we learn who He really is. He is our Savior who is with us in our weakness. Our weakness invites His power to empower and bring change. Change is a process, and He is with us in it! That is the living breathing grace of His presence.
So how do we respond to His grace? We should never make it cheap by either taking advantage of its freedom or by striving to change what only He can! We receive it! Walking in His grace is a love, an attitude, a joy, a purpose, a knowledge that He is over all, and that He is Lord of all—no matter what happens in this life. Nothing separates us from His love. It is constant when we aren’t. This is the loving grace of Jesus that looked beyond our need, and did what no one else could. Set us free.
©2018 Lynn Lacher