Continue to Grow in Grace – Tom Durst
Feb 8, 2015 1677
But continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory, now and forever! Amen.–2 Peter 3:18 Good News Translation (GNT)
When we receive Jesus as our Savior we are justified or accounted righteous—“just as if” we had never sinned. The perfect righteousness of Christ is imputed or credited to us as though it were our very own.
From this foundation of being fully accepted and righteous in Christ we begin to grow in our faith. We become more like the One whose righteousness has been given to us as a free gift, not because of any works we can do, but solely by His grace freely bestowed.
This process of growth is often referred to as sanctification, the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in our life. This is the work of a lifetime. We desire with all of our heart to become more like Jesus.
At the same time we recognize that our righteousness is solely in Him and not intrinsic to ourselves so there is never room to boast of our attainments. All the glory goes to the Lamb of God who loved us and gave Himself for us.
It makes all the difference in the world whether we do good works to be accepted or do them because we are already accepted and are counted as perfect at each stage of growth. The closer we come to Jesus the more we see our faults and failures so we need to constantly keep our eyes on Him and not look to ourself or others for perfection.
We are called “children of God” and we grow and mature always nurtured by His wonderful love and grace. Parents do not reject their children because they stumble and make mistakes. We have a Savior who is patient with us and doesn’t cast us off because of our shortcomings.
We must extend that same love to others and be patient with them. All of us can rejoice together with Paul in the gift of Jesus Christ for our redemption. There are indeed no words available to describe this gift.
Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift. –2 Corinthians 9:15 KJV
– Tom Durst (used with permission from the Union with God Devotional Forum)