The final part of a simple thought that we are so undeservingly blessed because of who God is and what He has done for us through Jesus Christ.
Paul is writing from prison.
Under pressure. Opposed. Questioned. Yet overflowing with the riches of God.
We have undeservedly received the abundant benefits of God in our lives. Today we close the list that Paul spoke of in these verses.
“Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2: 3-7
Incomparable riches of His grace. It means to excel, go beyond the mark and to surpass. With what? It is with Grace meaning loving-kindness and favour. An abundance of grace releasing the potential in the person. But there’s more …
Grace covers identity: Grace exposes the dark side of our lives, it is for Judas and Peter to say “yes I did that” but one of them could not accept that they had done such a thing and made things worse; the other accepted it and found their identity in grace. To live by grace means you are not denying or trying to forget the dark side of your life, but by allowing grace to expose it you find who you really are.
Grace opposes self-pity: Not that we end up depressed and whipping ourselves in a frenzy of guilt and shame over our sinful lives. Self-pity will never motivate you. Self-pity will not move you to grace any more than the victories, visions, successes and miracles will. Self-pity will keep you locked in failure, away from your home. Grace calls you to keep coming back to Jesus, let Jesus bind up the wounds, don’t let your self do it.
Grace is honesty: An honesty that says we keep breaking the rules. An honesty that says “I am cautious to say God told me … Because I could be wrong.” An honesty that displays character and silences the tongue. An honesty that says I may never be the person I want or should be but God loves me now as I am.
And finally in these few verses:
Kindness in Christ.
This is goodness. It is kindness that is fit for use.
God is an upside down God. He is not where you may think He may be. He hangs around communities you would not want to go near. His kindness is amazing but it also offensive. It is not fair. There seems to be no justice.
It throws parties for sons who have wasted the inheritance.
It promises assurance to dying thieves who ask to be remembered in the next life.
It is found in defeat not victory.
It refuses to break the bruised reed that everyone wants to break or snuff out the smouldering wick that everyone sees as useless.
You may be hurting, beating yourself up, troubled in your heart, held in the addiction to sin, feel this is for anyone but you, but the call remains, ‘receive my kindness.’