Grace is “God’s unmerited favor”. However, this Bible word is used to describe two things. The word “grace” is used to describe God’s unmerited favor in the salvation of the lost, and Paul used to describe the ministry of God’s saved people. Grace “is effectively displayed in particular divine activities—supremely in the redemptive death of Christ (Rom. 3:21–5, 5:6–8; Heb. 2:9), then in the calling of believers (Gal. 1:6; 2 Cor. 4:15; 2 Tim. 1:9) and in the gifts of ministry (Rom. 1:5; 12:6–8; Gal. 2:9). Indeed the whole range of Christian life within the Church is derived from grace.”
In the following Scriptures, Paul used the word “grace” to describe actions of the Christian life.
- Romans 6:14-15, you are not under the Law, but under grace (here used to describe the Christian system)
- Romans 12:6, having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us.
- Romans 16:20, I have written more boldly to you…because of the grace which was given to me by God
- 1 Corinthians 3:10, according to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder.
- 2 Corinthians 8:7, abound in this grace (gracious work NASB) also
- 2 Corinthians 8:9, you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich
- Ephesians 3:2, the stewardship of God’s grace
- Ephesians 3:8, to me this grace was given, that I should preach among the gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ.
- Ephesians 4:7, but to each one of us grace was given according to Christ’s gift.
We should appreciate our Christian ministry as an act of grace. When we serve it is in the fellowship of grace including God, ourselves, his church, and the lost world. Our ministry isn’t just “work”, it is “grace.”
That helps me to want to want to be involved in God’s gracious work. When I think about having perfect attendance for all the worship services (Hebrews 10:24-25); evangelism (Matthew 28:19-20); and prayer (Thessalonians 5:17), these things aren’t just duties or opportunities—they are acts of grace! What an opportunity to serve with our God in such a special way.