What About Grace?

Inspired by Luke 15:11-32

I have heard the story of the prodigal son so many times in my life. Growing up as an “active” church going Christian and serving in the fulltime ministry for more than 13 years, has always made me wonder, why the elder brother is labeled the bad guy in this parable. Come on and think about it... he is the good guy here. He was faithful in doing his father’s will; he had always stayed with his father and had never left his father to enjoy what the world had to offer. If this is the case why was there no celebrations for the elder son ever? (v29)

Sometimes it makes us wonder why people who have just heard the gospel experience more notable miracles than those who have been believers for ages, why there are more healings among the “newly converts” rather than church goers, why those who have left the Father are brought back with extraordinary testimonies. Does the Father love the prodigals more than His people who are totally devoted to Him? Do I need to be a “prodigal” to win the Father’s attention and favor?

The real issue here is the condition of the heart, the mind set, the attitude. The prodigal comes before the Father knowing that he has done badly, that he has failed the Father in every way and that he has destroyed everything and nothing that he has done nor nothing he does will regain the Father’s favor (vs. 18 - 21). This is the attitude that qualifies one to gain God’s blessings. One needs to understand and realize that it is the “unmerited favor of God” that releases God’s unlimited blessings.

Most believers, like the elder brother, unconsciously reason that their faithfulness and commitment win them the favor of God. And this is precisely the kind of attitude that disqualifies one from God’s blessings. We think because we serve Him or because we have fasted and prayed or because we obey His entire commandments we deserve God’s blessing. Sad to say but this is how the church has been programmed to think. Growing up in church, I have heard numerous preachers say that we need to do this and that to gain God’s blessings. The truth is, there is absolutely NOTHING we can do to earn the favor of God.

We serve Him because we love Him, not to gain His blessings. We pray because we have a relationship with the Father, not to secure His favor. We worship to exalt Him, giving Him what is due and not to manipulate Him into blessing us. Everything that we do must be founded and motivated by love. Love is an act of selflessness. It does not require anything in return.

The elder brother, like the Pharisees, disqualified himself from the blessings of the father because he thought that all his doings could earn him his father’s favor. Though everything was his, (vs. 31) he never enjoyed it.

Let us walk in this truth, that everything which belongs to the Father is ours and we have it because of whatJESUS has done for us on the cross not because of what we have done or can do or will ever be able to do. It is the grace of God, THE UNMERITTED FAVOR OF GOD. Grace is not just the point of salvation but it is everything after that, we are SAVED by grace and we LIVE by grace.

By Kater B


Mish said...

Your blog got my attention, it's amazing how it's so powerful and strong. I really love it and it is the truth so I love it even more!!! Keep up this good work and God bless you for trying to spread the word. Mish PS: If I can ask, where did you see my blog?

Sam Gray said...

Hi Thanks... It is amazing right, the Grace of God. Well i saw the link to your blog at facebook.

Romy said...

I should have written this as a review but I ran out of it, so I post my comment here. Good site design and color. I have so much to say about the "Grace" article but I want to invite you in my site instead. I don't want to compare with lifelong believers as I am a born-again Christian, but my Faith has changed a lot of me like the prodigal son. Others may not admire my actions and question my intention but my Father in heaven Rejoices in me. I know it for sure.

Cynthia said...

This is a beautifully written piece on grace. Very well said.

Sam Gray said...

Thanks guys... Praise God that this blog had been a blessing to you guys as much as it has been to me, I will keep it updated as much as i can please visit back in few days. God bless. Thanks Yvonne for the great editing