So I got an email from a friend a couple weeks back, and I found it to be a very clear and easy explanation of Grace and how to understand it according to Scripture. With all due respect and appreciation for my Calvinist friends, I present this for your consideration and discussion:
I heard something that I thought I should share. I was listening to a sermon on tape and the pastor made a comment that made me immediately remember a conversation I had with you. The pastor’s comment, as best as I can recollect, was “Grace is the power of God working in you to change your life. The definition ‘unmerited favor’ was invented by the Calvinists and is not the real definition of grace.” I looked up Strong’s definition and got this,
“From G5463; graciousness (as gratifying) of manner or act (abstract or concrete; literal figurative or spiritual; especially the divine influence upon the heart and its reflection in the life; including gratitude): – acceptable benefit favour gift grace (-ious) joy liberality pleasure thank (-s -worthy).
I would have to highlight “especially the divine influence upon the heart and its reflection in the life”.
I have encountered other Strong’s apps for smartphones and other websites that contain a much simpler definition, but the 40 year old book at my parent’s house does also contain the definition verbatim that I copied above.
I have been going through each verse that contains the word grace, and with this new definition, there is often so much more meaning to be understood.
Take for example I Corinthians 15:10. “But by the grace of God, I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly then they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was in me.”