There is some surprising news: The New Testament word “grace” does not fundamentally mean “unmerited favor.”
Its basic meaning does include favor (of any kind) along with kindness, but it also includes enablement and gifting, important concepts we often miss.
You see, God’s grace not only did something amazing for us—forgiving us for all our sins—but His grace continues to do something amazing for us—empowering us to live for Him. In fact, there was nothing revolutionary in the New Testament concept of grace meaning “favor” or “gift.”
What was revolutionary was the degree of favor shown to us through the cross and the ongoing effectiveness of that favor in our lives. Grace finishes what it starts.
Why is this so important to understand? It is because too many Christians...