• Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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Unmerited Favor

Jesus on the CrossBut God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8 ESV)

“Unmerited Favor”: These words are often used to define the grace God has shown us in saving us from our sins. Grace was revealed to us in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus lived a righteous life and, yet, took our sins upon Himself and died on the cross – which would have been our just punishment. This great gift teaches us not only gratitude, but to live in a godly manner because of it. We are constrained by the unmerited favor of Christ to live godly lives.

With the passing of time, many Christians may tend to lose their sense of wonder at God’s unmerited favor. We begin to take for granted the sins that destined us for eternal punishment. We need to remember the source of our faith. God has been gracious to us. We may never fully understand God’s mercy, but such a great grace surely deserves a joyful response from us. Godly living is such a response.

Godly living is not a simple list of “do’s and don’ts.” It is living by the example of Jesus Christ, the man. Our feelings and attitudes should become like those of Christ’s. We love that which Christ loves. Since Christ loves righteousness as God the Father loves righteousness, we, too, are to love righteousness. A godly man will attempt to glorify God in everything he does. Such a life, however, soon brings us into conflict with the world system. Godly living is not easy. It is, however, a worthy calling for those who have received God’s unmerited favor.

Consider the promise that Jesus Christ will come a second time. This revelation should serve to motivate godly living. We do not know the day or hour; whether it will be this year or in a thousand years, but would it not be wonderful for Jesus – on that day – to find us living to the glory of God? This is, perhaps, the very least we can do in light of His unmerited favor.

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:4-7 ESV)

Samuel at Gilgal

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