Favor and Grace

What then shall we say to these things?  If God is for us, who can be against us?                                                                              Romans 8:31

To be for something is to give it your approval, to support it, to invest in it.  When you are “for” something you give it preference, you favor it.  God has given us his favor.

The word “favor” appears many times throughout the Bible.  In the Old Testament especially, it appears to be used interchangeably with the word “grace.”

 

“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” (Genesis 6:8)

“And the Lord said to Moses, ‘This very thing that you have spoken I will do, for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.” (Exodus 33:17)

“Thus says the Lord:

‘The people who survived the sword

found grace in the wilderness.’”  (Jeremiah 31:2)

 

God isn’t on our side because of anything we have worked to earn.  God is for us entirely because of Christ.   No sweat and blood is needed—because of God’s grace, the race is over: we do not need to wait on a good word from anyone else.   We need no list of references, no other recommendation; our Judge chose to become our representative.

In politics, human favor awaits the decision of the majority.  In God’s economy, God is the only majority, and his favor never ends (Psalm 30:5). He is for us because of the one and only Word: Jesus Christ.

 

“Happy are the simple followers of Jesus Christ, who have been overcome by his grace.”    -Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

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