In 2 Cor. 12:7-9 it says: “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
So Paul had a thorn and we know it was brought forth by the devil. We also know it was to keep Paul humble. The interesting thing is what the Lord told Paul, “My grace is sufficient”. Have you ever been disappointed with that answer? Or have you ever heard people quote that when going through a hard time?
Well if what God said to Paul has ever disappointed you, then you probably don’t truly understand what grace is. Some might think its mercy, but the Lord didn’t say My mercy is sufficient, He said His grace was.
Grace is Not Mercy!
It?s important to understand that grace and mercy is not the same thing at all. If I’m standing before a judge and I know I’m in trouble, am I going to beg for grace or mercy? Mercy of course! Surprisingly even the Amplified Bible describes grace as God’s unmerited favor, but mercy is God’s unmerited favor. It’s something you don’t deserve, but God gives it to you anyway. Both are very important, for we are nothing without Jesus.
2 Peter 3:18 says, “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.”
We are told to grow in grace, but if we don’t know what grace is, how are we supposed to grow in it? I would say most people think of it like mercy, they define grace as God’s unmerited favor. But if that’s true, can you grow in mercy?
We are to grow up, continue, and increase in God’s grace. Not knowing what grace is may have serious consequences in your life.
Grace is a divine influence upon our hearts and souls to cause us to walk in our inherited right that Jesus Christ purchased at Calvary.
In Romans 8:17 it says that we are “joint-heirs with Christ” if we are not walking and growing the God’s grace, we will never live as joint-heirs with Christ, you will live powerless lives always begging for mercy. Now remember, mercy is a good thing and we all need it, but grace in another thing that is a huge part of our lives. I encourage you to remember what grace is next time you run across a verse that talks about grace, or even do a study on it.
Being joint heirs and walking in our inheritance is a huge topic that would take pages to write about. I’ll try to work on something real soon that covers that topic.
Grace to you my friends.