A Voice from the Past: The True Grace Of God In Which You Stand -- By: J. N. Darby
JOTGES 8:2 (Autumn 95) p. 69
A Voice from the Past:
The True Grace Of God In Which You Stand
—I have written to you briefly; exhorting and testifying that this is [the] true grace of God in which ye stand (1 Peter 5:12b, “New Translation”1 ).
GOD is made known to us as the “God of all grace,” and the position in which we are set is that of “tasting that He is gracious.” How hard it is for us to believe this, that the Lord is gracious. The natural feeling of our hearts is, “I know that thou are an austere man”; there is the want in all of us naturally of the understanding of the Grace of God.
There is sometimes the thought that grace implies God’s passing over sin, but no, grace supposes sin to be so horribly bad a thing that God cannot tolerate it: were it in the power of man, after being unrighteous and evil, to patch up his ways, and mend himself so as to stand before
JOTGES 8:2 (Autumn 95) p. 70
God, there would be no need of grace. The very fact of the Lord being gracious shows sin to be so evil a thing that, man being a sinner, his state is utterly ruined and hopeless, and nothing but free grace will do for him—can meet his need.
We must learn what God is to us, not by our own thoughts, but by what He has revealed Himself to be, and that is, “The God of all Grace.” The moment I understand that I am a sinful man, and yet that it was because the Lord knew the full extent of my sin, and what its hatefulness was, that He came to me, I understand what grace is. Faith makes me see that God is greater than my sin, and not that my sin is greater than God. The Lord that I have known as laying down His life for me, is the same Lord I have to do with every day of my life, and all His dealings with me are on the same principles of grace. The great secret of growth is, the looking up to the Lord as gracious. How precious, how strengthening it is to know that Jesus is at this moment feeling and exercising the same love towards me as when He died on the cross for me.
This is a truth that should be used by us in the most common everyday circumstances of life. Suppose, for instance, I find an evil temper in myself, which I feel it difficult to overcome; let me bring it to Jesus as my Friend, and virtue2 goes out of Him for my need. Faith should be ever thus in exercise against temptations, and not simply my own effort; my own effort against it will never be sufficient. The source of...
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