Continuing in Grace


"Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God" (Acts 13:43).

In this verse we see Paul and Barnabas encouraging new converts to "continue in the grace of God." That, of course, first means to continue studying it. For example, in the Greek text there are two nouns, two verbs and one adjective for "grace." The principle one is the noun
charis—free, undeserved favor. Though sometimes translated by different words, chaos occurs 156 times in the New Testament. It is not found in Matthew and Mark. In Luke only 8 times and John only 4 times. In Acts it appears 16 times, and the same number of times in the epistles of James, Peter, John and Jude. And Revelation only has the word twice.

Here's an interesting fact. This wonderful word appears a whopping 110 times in Paul's epistles The less you read Paul, the less you'll know grace. And the less you know grace, the more you'll know sin. Only when we learn what grace can do will we experience its full power. As Thomas Brooks said, "It is the very nature of grace to make a man strive to be most eminent in that particular grace which is most opposed to his bosom sin."

I believe we need grace to even study grace so we can grow wise and strong in grace. Are you continuing in the grace of God?