Message of Grace

PUBLISHED BY GRACE CHAPEL MINISTRIES OF O’BRIEN, FLORIDA

“FOR BY GRACE ARE YE SAVED THROUGH FAITH; AND THAT NOT OF YOURSELVES: IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD: NOT OF WORKS, LEST ANY MAN SHOULD BOAST” EPHESIANS 2 :8

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The God of the Bible

Everyone has their own idea of who God is and what He is like. Even those who call themselves atheists have a god. They merely put themselves in the place of God and say that they are the masters of their own life and destiny. The scripture says that such men as these are fools. (Ps. 14) There are other men who 'believe' in god, but the god they believe in is a god of their imagination, for he is certanly not the God who is described in the pages of the Holy Scriptures. Mankind, since the fall, (Gen. 3, Rom. 5:12-21) has been in rebellion against the true living God, yet all the while they have had their 'god'. The need of man is not to have a god, not to believe in a higher power, but to recognize WHO the true Lord God really is. The place we must go to find this out is in the pages of His Holy Word, the Bible, which is His written revelation to men.

As we examine the scriptures, we see that they begin and end with God. Genesis 1, tells us, 'In the beginning God...', and then we read in Revelation 22:13, 'I am the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.' Plainly, Jehovah God is eternal. He has always been and He shall always be. He described Himself to Moses in this fashion, "I AM, THAT I AM." (Ex. 3:14)

We find, as well, that the God of the Bible is absolutely holy. That is, that He is totally without sin and is set against all that is unrighteous. Isaiah, the prophet, and John the apostle, were both given visions of the place God occupies in His utter holiness, as they saw angels around His throne, crying out day and night without ceasing: "Holy, Holy, Holy." (Is. 6, Rev. 4)

He is also absolutely sovereign. By that we mean; He owns all of creation and has the right to do with it as He wills. Not only does He have the right, but He has the power to do His will, and does it. He worketh ALL things after the counsel of Hid own will. (Eph. 1:11) He rules over men, angels, and the devil and NONE can stay His hand nor even question His doing. (Dan. 4:35) He again spoke to Moses concerning His sovereignty, when He said; "I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will show mercy on whom I will show mercy." (Ex. 33:19)

He is completely just and will deal with men according to that justice. He does not overlook sin, which is the transgression of His holy law, nor does He excuse men in their wickedness. (Ex. 34:7, Nahum 1:3) His law must ve fulfilled or the penalty it exacts must be paid.

He never changes, and will remain the same throughout eternity to come, just as He has been in eternity past. He shall not forget nor alter the word He has spoken. (Mal. 3:6)

Then the scriptures speak of an attribute of God which we hear much of today; and that is His love and mercy. We must never neglect the preaching of His love and mercy, but we dare not do as the modern religionists do and leave off the proclamation of His other attributes, simply because we cannot seem to reconcile them in our minds. With out the love of God, there would be no gospel. If God were not merciful, there would be no need for any man to ever hope for salvation. Were it not that the Lord of Glory was full of grace and love, then this wretched race of mankind would be eternally ruined. "In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. (1 Jn. 4:9)

God did not arrange this means of salvation as a last ditch effort, nor did He wait until man had fallen before devising a plan for his redemption. As He is eternal, Jesus Christ was a 'Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.' (Rev. 13:8)

God did not lay aside His holiness when He became man in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ. 'He was tempted in all points... yet without sin.' (Heb. 4:15)

Nor was His justice put away, but rather His justice is never seen in anymore strictness, than when He put His own Son to death for sinners. His law demanded the shedding of blood for the remission of sin and Christ satisfied that law with His life and death, 'that He might be just and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.' (Rom. 3:26)

A man may believe in God and still not have salvation. 'The devils believe and tremble.' (Jas. 2:19) A man may even believe that Jesus Christ is the Holy One of God, and still only have the knowledge which the unclean spirits possess. (Mat. 8:29, Mk. 1:24)

If a man is saved, he must not only believe that there is a God, but he must bow down before that true and living God and recognize His dominion. He must not only believe that Jesus Christ is God, and that He is the Saviour of sinners; but he must throw himself, in faith, upon that Saviour, trusting Him completely for pardon and remission of sin. As long as man tries to save himself, he shall be damned; but he that casts himself upon the mercy of God clinging to the blood and righteousness of Jesus Christ has the blessed hope of eternal life. Is that blessed hope and promise of eternal life yours? It can only be obtained from the hands of the holy, soverign Lord of Glory. HE is the giver of life. If you would be saved, you must bow down at His feet in repentance, and cry out as the unclean leper, "Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean." That same unchanging Lord with arms stretched out in mercy, bids thee come.

Volume 1

Originally published: August 1977

Number 2