Grace and Truth

Today’s message summary from Pastor Gus Brown:

When you begin to accept God’s truth in your life, it heals us emotionally and mentally. God’s Word is able to provide the healing when we simply trust in Him.

Father, we pray that we will discover how wonderful you are in what you do, and we pray that you show your power, love and grace, and we give you the praise in Jesus’ name–Amen.

Grace is for the believer to be able to live the life that Christ has purchased for you. We will not, however, understand this grace that He gives us unless we understand God’s truth. Grace, by itself, will not help us to develop the growth that we need. His truth is what helps us to understand who He is and what it means to be obedient to Him. His grace and His truth must work hand-in-hand in order for us to grow in Him. We need grace and truth. It takes both for us to grow in Christian development.

It is the same as using fertilizer and water in a garden. It takes both to make plants grow and grow heartily. Grace and truth must work together in the same way.

The truth about God, as we learn more about Him, helps us with greater understanding about Him. Note the standard that He has in comparison to man:

Numbers 23:19
God is not a man who lies,
or a son of man who changes His mind.
Does He speak and not act,
or promise and not fulfill?

God does not need to change His ways, accordingly, in order to satisfy us. He is not like a man, and He will not compromise His standards for our sake. He will not change according to our likes, dislikes or behavior. In order for us to have fellowship with God, we have to change our ways to conform to Him.

Romans 3:2-4
2 Considerable in every way. First, they were entrusted with the spoken words of God. 3 What then? If some did not believe, will their unbelief cancel God’s faithfulness? 4 Absolutely not! God must be true, even if everyone is a liar, as it is written:

That You may be justified in Your words
and triumph when You judge.

For some people, God’s Word can either be a blessing or a curse. How we respond to God and His Word does not change the truth behind God’s Word. He is and always remains faithful to His Word. God will honor those that have faith and trust in Him (so that you may be proved right when you speak and prevail when you judge – Romans 2:4 NIV), and those who fail to trust Him will determine and earn their own reward. Your faith and belief in God that He will honor His Word will prove you to be correct in all matters and dealings with others.

2 Corinthians 12:9
But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me.

2 Corinthians 9:8
And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.

God’s grace allows you to be successful in all that you do, and He even will empower you when you believe you are unable to go forward.

Titus 2:11-12
11 For the grace of God has appeared with salvation for all people, 12 instructing us to deny godlessness and worldly lusts and to live in a sensible, righteous, and godly way in the present age.

As we have been living in Satan’s domain, we have been taught things that are of the world and that are often filled with ungodliness. God has taught us, through His Word, that we need to renew our minds:

Romans 12:2
Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.

God says that He will teach us about these things in order for us to learn complete truth. His truth is the teaching that is delivered to us by the Holy Spirit and gives us the ability to recognize God’s grace and His love for us.

Grace and truth are tied together to develop in you a Christ-like lifestyle.

We need to know truth. Pontius Pilate asked the question, “What is truth?” (John 18:38)

A dictionary definition of truth is loyalty and trustworthiness–the quality or state of being true; an agreement with a standard, a rule, correctness and accuracy.

As a people, it is virtually impossible to meet this standard; in fact, only God truly meets this standard according to the definition.

God and the biblical use of truth is not the conformity to some external standard but, instead, faithfulness and reliability. God’s faithfulness and reliability is the standard that we are to follow, and He always keeps His Word.

John 16:13
When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak whatever He hears. He will also declare to you what is to come.

Deuteronomy 7:8-11
8 But because the Lord loved you and kept the oath He swore to your fathers, He brought you out with a strong hand and redeemed you from the place of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. 9 Know that Yahweh your God is God, the faithful God who keeps His gracious covenant loyalty for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commands. 10 But He directly pays back and destroys those who hate Him. He will not hesitate to directly pay back the one who hates Him. 11 So keep the command—the statutes and ordinances—that I am giving you to follow today.

Isaiah 65:16
Whoever is blessed in the land
will be blessed by the God of truth,
and whoever swears in the land
will swear by the God of truth.
For the former troubles will be forgotten
and hidden from My sight.

Psalm 146:5-6
5 Happy is the one whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord his God,
6 the Maker of heaven and earth,
the sea and everything in them.
He remains faithful forever.

God’s truth that He provides is a reflection of God Himself–He is truth.

John 1:14-17
14 The Word became flesh
and took up residence among us.
We observed His glory,
the glory as the One and Only Son
from the Father,
full of grace and truth.
15 (John testified concerning Him and exclaimed,
“This was the One of whom I said,
‘The One coming after me has surpassed me,
because He existed before me.’”)
16 Indeed, we have all received grace after grace
from His fullness,
17 for the law was given through Moses,
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

Why is important, in this verse sequence, is grace noted first before truth? It is because God gives us the grace to learn and apply God’s truth. Without grace, the truth may be present but we do not have the ability to apply it to our lives. He did all of this–give us grace and truth–out of love for each of us. We are all in need to this grace and truth because of who we are.

Romans 3:23
23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

Our standard is in Jesus Christ, the only one who lived on earth who was without sin. Note that our ministry to others should also reflect the same grace and truth that God has given to each of us:

Colossians 4:6
Your speech should always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should answer each person.

God, through the Holy Spirit, will give you the ability to provide every answer. It is because of His grace and His truth that we can move forward with confidence in Jesus Christ. It is as simple as believing God in what He has proclaimed and trusting in Him.

Lord, may you minister to us with the Word, your grace, and the teaching of your truth in the coming weeks, and we give you the praise in all of these matters in Jesus’ name–Amen.

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