GROWING IN GRACE
Lead Bible Reference 2Peter 3:18
In the bible the ways grace is used connote the following:
1. God’s general love, mercy and favour given not based on any merit on our side. That is why it is generally called unmerited favour.
2. God’s salvation given to us not because of our righteousness but simply by faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross.
3. Great QUALITIES or VIRTUES mercifully bestowed by God to help us to deal with issues, people and situations effectively and in very godly manners. With grace we are able to act and behave in beautiful and splendid ways that are beyond our abilities.
4. Great ABILITIES mercifully bestowed by God to help us to do things that we could never have been able to do by our natural abilities no matter hard we tried.
5. Spiritual offices (gifts of service) e.g. of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers
6. The future heavenly blessedness that Christians are to receive 1 Peter 1:13
Using the acronym G-R-A-C-E, grace has beencalled God’s Great Riches At Christ’s Expense. The
riches are the favour, great qualities, great abilities, spiritual gifts and heavenly blessedness all made available through the redemptive work of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The topic of our study and the bible reference from which it was taken say that we are expected to grow or increase in all the 6 vcriches that grace connotes.Grace is a description of the character of God,
which is displayed by His gifts to men. It was thegrace of God that angered Jonah because grace
was granted to the enemies of Israel. To Jonah,patriotism was more important than preaching or
faithfulness. On the other hand, it was grace which kept God from dealing with Jonah as severely as his sin would require. God gently asked Jonah, “Do you have good reason to be angry?” Jonah.4:4
What does it mean to grow in grace: 2Peter 3:18 tells us to “grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.” To grow in grace is to mature as a Christian. It means to increase in Christ-likeness through the unmerited power of God’s Spirit. We are saved by grace through faith –Eph.2:89, and we mature and are sanctified by grace alone. We know that grace is a blessing that we don’t deserve. It is God’s grace that justifies us, sanctifies us, and will eventually glorify us in heaven. The sanctification process,which is, becoming more like Christ, is synonymous with growing in grace.
1. What Grace can do for a soul:
From the following passages, explain what grace can do for a soul.
ii. Gen.6:5-8; 18:17;
v. 1Kg.17:8- & Lk.4:25-26; consider
2Kg.5:1 & Lk.4:27
vi. Ps.84:11-12 & 2Cort.9:8 Hints: Salvation; favour; changing of unwanted past; lack and wants into abundance; supplying you with what is generally lacking; provides access to all things in the Lord
2. Obstacles to receiving Grace:
From the following passages, discuss the possible obstacles to receiving Grace
i. R o m . 6 : 1 – 2 ; 1 2 – 1 4 ; I P e t . 2 : 1 6 ;Gal.15:13; Prov.28:13
ii. IThes.5:17; Mt.17:20-21; Lk.18:1;Phil.4:6;
iii. Rom.12:2; 8:6; Col.3:2; Tit.2:11-12;
iv. Det.11:8; 28:9; Job.31:11
v. Mention other possible obstacles
3. Conditions for Growing in Grace
To grow in grace, the conditions for growth must be complied with. From the following passages,
discuss the conditions for growing in grace.
i. IPet.2:2; Col.3:16; Ps.119:11
ii. Josh.1:8; Det.26:16; Mt.7:21;
iii. IJhn.1:7; 2:6; Rom.6:4; Gal.5:10
iv. Heb:10:25; Mt.12:9; Mk.1:21; Lk.4:16
v. James.4:6; IPet.5:5-6
The above conditions for growth by themselves don’t mature us, but God uses these spiritual disciplines to help us grow. Therefore, maturing in our Christian life is not about what we do, but
about what God does in us, by His grace.Understanding and applying God’s grace in our lives is therefore of great importance
All growth is by grace; it’s God’s gift. We must constantly ask Him in prayer to make us grow to become the people He wants us to be. Are you as loving and kind as God wants expects you to be?
Are you hospitable? Do you open your home and share your belongings with others who are in need? Do you witness to the lost in some way? Do you support the ministry of your church with your
time and resources as you promised in time past?Are you teaching your children from the scriptures, giving them the knowledge they need to stand as believers? Is the Lord Jesus the first priority in your life, so that to serve him you would count everything else as garbage? If any answer to the above questions is negative, you need to grow in grace.
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