Today, I wanted to share the post below from Our Daily Bread. This message reimprinted the message our bible study group heard from Dr. Tony Evans the night before on his teaching on the Shield of Faith in the Armor of God series. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, our Father deposits grace in our account, which we can access through faith. Giving grace to others is a big piece I’m personally working on right now, so I decided to take a short detour from our study in James (which also talks a lot about grace). “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:1-2)
What’s in the Bank?
In the winter of 2009, a large passenger plane made an emergency landing in New York’s Hudson River. The pilot, Captain Chesley Sullenberger, who landed the plane safely with no casualties, was later asked about those moments in the air when he was faced with a life-or-death decision. “One way of looking at this,” he said, “might be that for 42 years I’ve been making small, regular deposits in this bank of experience, education, and training. And on [that day] the balance was sufficient so that I could make a very large withdrawal.”
Most of us will at some time face a crisis. Perhaps it will be a job termination or the results of a medical test, or the loss of a precious family member or friend. It is in those times that we must dig down deep into the reserves of our spiritual bank account.
And what might we find there? If we have enjoyed a deepening relationship with God, we’ve been making regular “deposits” of faith. We have experienced His grace. “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.” (2 Cor. 8:9)
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” (Eph. 2:4-7).
We trust the promise of Scripture that God is just and faithful. “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. (Deut. 32:4) “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” (2 Thess. 3:3).
God’s love and grace are available when His children need to make a “withdrawal”. “Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” (Ps. 9:10) and (Heb. 4:16).
Great is Your faithfulness, O Lord God! Each day I see You provide for me and show me mercy. Thank You. Remembering God’s faithfulness in the past strengthens us for the future.
In today’s text Paul reminds the believers in the church at Ephesus that their salvation is wholly God’s doing—after all, dead things (v. 5) can’t do anything to change their situation. But Paul doesn’t stop with the reminder that it is God who makes us alive. He adds that the goal of that gracious action is to show the incomparable riches of God’s grace. God saves us to show us who He is.