“John, to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne…”
Grace to you
Revelation has both a prescript (1:4-8) and a postscript (22:21). The prescript is the “hello” of the Book of Revelation.
This salutation is similar to some of Paul’s salutations. Of the 27 books of the New Testament, 19 begin with the formula “grace and peace.”
Grace always precedes peace in this formula. If we receive grace, we will have peace. God’s standard approach to us is always first through grace. We will never know peace until God vanquishes us by His grace. There can be no peace without first getting a firm grasp of grace.
Grace means that God is the source for any need we might have. He is the source and provider of blessing. At the heart of the grace idea is that God does the doing. If He does the doing, He gets the glory. If we do the doing, we get the glory. That is why the Bible emphasizes grace. When we operate in grace, we always depend on who God is and what He does.
The Christian needs grace to operate in the Christian life.
“Grace” is what God does on our behalf. We have no currency with God other than grace. We do not have anything by which we can impress God. God is only impressed with Jesus Christ. That is why He is the central figure of Revelation.
We never surpass our need for grace. God deals with us in grace all through our Christian lives until we get to heaven. We would never think of running our car without oil; neither should we think of living the Christian life without grace. That is how we maintain our spiritual stability.
God has cornered the market on grace. We cannot earn it. We do not deserve it. We cannot buy it with good works. When it comes to grace, we cannot go through a middleman to get it. We must go right to the manufacturer. Jesus provides everything we need to live the Christian life.
“But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen” (1 Peter 5:10-11).
“Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).
God gives grace; we do not earn it. He donates it to us when we humble ourselves before Him.
“Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble’” (1 Peter 5:5).
God gives grace to the humble. He does not give it to the proud. He resists giving grace to the proud. God is either our antagonist or our protagonist when it comes to grace. He is either for us or against us.
God gives “more” grace to some people.
But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: ”God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).
He gives us abundant grace for any situation we face. There is always a surplus of God’s grace for those who humble themselves before Him. We never exhaust God’s grace.
When it comes to difficult situations, all we need is God’s grace.
“And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).
Most of us do not know our need for the grace of God. We do not seek it, so we do not draw on God’s sufficiency.
“And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (2 Colossians 12:8).
God wants us to “abound” in grace. Why then are we feeble in our acquisition of grace? Why are our souls bankrupt of the grace of God? We must admit that we cannot live the Christian life without God’s provisions (John 15:5).