God’s grace for the New Year – Part 1
If there is anything you need this New Year, if there is one provision of heaven that has the capacity to carry you through the turbulence that is life on earth, if there is one simple and short solution to the problems of life, it is to be found in the word, Grace. The kingdom of God promises so much, but what you desire can never come through your good works or civilised behaviour, or resolution to turn a new leaf in 2022. In time, all this will be found to be inadequate.
Grace is one of the most understated provisions of God for Christians. Yet, without it, everything else you depend upon falls spectacularly apart. You come into the kingdom of God, remain there, and enjoy all the blessings of the kingdom all by grace. It is, therefore, for this reason that the Apostle Paul’s epistle to the church in Colossae began with grace and ended with grace. All that it reveals to us from chapters one to four is the expansion, explanation and the work of grace.
The acronym ‘GRACE’ stands for God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense. Everything that believers enjoy in Christ Jesus is by grace, not on the basis of merit or good works. Our redemption and preservation in the kingdom is by the grace of God. God’s grace works supernatural wonders in the life of His children.
The entire epistle to the Colossians reveals God’s provisions for believers through His grace, mercy and love. Also, it highlights Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for the redemption of mankind. By God’s grace, believers’ needs are met, their prayers are answered, they enjoy divine visitation and obtain the Christian experiences that make them walk in godliness and ready for heaven.
Grace is God’s redemption at Christ’s expense. Man’s salvation from sin would have remained a mirage with the vicarious sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary. “In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.” It is obvious that no one can obtain the inheritance, which God has prepared for His children, for all believers, without cleansing in Christ’s blood.
Redemption means that Jesus Christ purchased us from the slave market of sin through His blood, with which also He pardoned and cleansed our sins.
Although history chronicled the acts of some famous and heroic men, none of them qualified to redeem man from the bondage of sin. “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). God’s promise of man’s redemption was fulfilled through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the Cross.
To receive pardon and forgiveness, and qualify to enter God’s holy kingdom, sinners must recognise Christ as the only way, confess and forsake their sins. We can only enter God’s great and glorious kingdom through grace. Grace is the key that unlocks the gates of heaven.
Apart from the miracle of healing, deliverance, fruitfulness, provision, promotion, among others, which believers enjoy, the origin and climax of God’s visitation is redemption of humanity from the bondage of sin. “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people. To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins”.
Our redemption in Christ Jesus is by faith. Therefore, people who attempt to obtain salvation by their good works or by being religious cannot experience the forgiveness and peace of mind that God’s grace brings. Redemption through Christ takes away the burden and guilt of sin. We must, therefore, accept, believe and confess our redemption in Christ, which qualifies us to enjoy other blessings of the kingdom. No one knows all that the New Year portends, but one thing is certain: the grace of God is sufficient to steer you through it successfully.
Further Reading (King James Version): Colossians 1: 1, 2; 4:18; Colossians 1:14; Romans 3:23,24; Luke 1:68,77; Titus 2:11,12,14.