“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.” (2 Cor. 12:9)
I believe that more people spend their time thinking about what infirmity it was that came upon Paul, the reason for praying earnestly three times for the Lord to remove what he did not want to bear than on the answer the Lord God gave to him, the unmerited, undeserving favor that the Lord was giving him.
To grow in the grace and knowledge of God can only come from God, you can study the Scriptures everyday all day and not grow at all in the knowledge of the Almighty unless He decides to reveal the truths of His word to you. If this were not true, we would not have untold numbers of religious organizations, with just as many people debating about what God meant when he wrote down what He said for us.
You were born, you breath air, that’s called grace. “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” (Rev. 4:11) That’s grace.
Many of you actually own your own Bible, that is an incomprehensible grace, the Word of God Himself available to you whenever you want it, in fact I would presume that nearly all of you have a handheld device that can access not only the complete Word of God, but a concordance, Biblical study guides, anything that you could possibly want readily available twenty-four hours a day. That is grace.
I don’t know if any of you have actually contemplated Matthew 24:14 in this regard, “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” That handheld device, that phone of yours and the billions of other phones out there in a great sense have fulfilled this prophecy.
The grace of God fills His entire creation, from “Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?” (Matt. 6:26) To the heart of man, both those who seek His face continually and those who deny and despise Him. Grace is love, an all-encompassing love that is sufficient for all of creation to exist, the grace of God covers all of reality.
But the knowledge of God is reserved for those who have forsaken all for His glory, it is for them who have determined that this life is immaterial unless it is lived in service to the Most High, lifting up the name of Jesus with every breath.
The first requirement, if you will, in growing in the knowledge of God is trust, complete and total trust, no wavering no matter the circumstances. You must believe continuously in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” You must have no doubts about Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
Trusting in the Lord is the foundation of the man who desires the knowledge of the Holy, and the entire Word of God proves this statement. You cannot grow in the grace of God unless you trust Him. “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Heb. 11:6)
Those who trust Him do not fear Him in the sense that He would intentionally cause us grief and sorrow or pain for His own pleasure, but we accept these facts of life when they appear in our lives, because we know in a way that we may or may not be shown that they arrive for His glory. Paul had to ask three times before he figured that out.
We are saved by grace, because of His loving grace we are justified, we are being sanctified and we will be glorified only because of His grace. Unmerited favor, no works can achieve that, nothing we can do can earn it. And if you are indeed a child of the Most High, that grace will never be removed from you.