Monday, February 22, 2010

Grace is not a "Thing"

From Reformation Theology

It is legitimate to speak of “receiving grace,” and sometimes (although I am somewhat cautious about the possibility of misusing language) we speak of the preaching of the Word, prayer, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper as “means of grace.” That is fine, so long as we remember that there isn’t a thing, a substance, or a “quasi-substance” called “grace.” All there is is the person of the Lord Jesus — “Christ clothed in the gospel,” as Calvin loved to put it. Grace is the grace of Jesus. If I can highlight the thought here: there is no “thing” that Jesus takes from Himself and then, as it were, hands over to me. There is only Jesus Himself.

Grasping that thought can make a significant difference to a Christian’s life. So while some people might think this is just splitting hairs about different ways of saying the same thing, it can make a vital difference. It is not a thing that was crucified to give us a thing called grace. It was the person of the Lord Jesus that was crucified in order that He might give Himself to us through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

- Sinclair Ferguson

1 comment:

Steve Martin said...

That is surely true.


The Lord Jesus has decided that He would use certain tangible means to give that grace (ie Himself)to sinners who need it (HIm).

He uses actual vibrations of sound waves that cary the spoken Word.

He uses water, bread and wine...all accompanied by those sound waves, which contain His promises.

These means are the conduit (which God Himself has chosen)that brings that needed grace to us.

Why these means?

We'll have to wait and ask Him that when we get there.