By Raymond E. Harris
In Titus 2:12, we are informed that “the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men.” It is important that everyone understands the meaning of the word “grace.” And it is vital that everyone understands the part that “grace” plays in bringing about one’s salvation from sin!
This word is rather well defined simply as “unmerited, free or undeserved favor and goodwill.” Hence, grace is the goodwill of God extended to mankind despite man’s rebellion and sinfulness.
As we consider the Bible account of the unfolding of human history, we see how every generation from mother Eve till the present has rebelled and sinned against God. Divine justice demanded that God be true to Himself, keep His word, and separate Himself from sinful mankind. Isaiah the prophet wrote, “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear” (59:2).
However, God, as would be the case with any loving parent, did not want His whole creation to be lost in Hell. Hence, with His characteristic mercy and love, He devised a “scheme of redemption” whereby the souls of mankind could be saved. Despite the fact that, “all sin and come short of the glory of God,” the Almighty extended His grace and devised a plan whereby penitent, obedient individuals can be saved from the consequences of their unrighteousness.
All mankind was lost in sin and doomed! But now God extends His grace! God provides for man a way of escape that he cannot provide for himself. Paul wrote, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Eph. 2:8).
Hence, we see God’s grace in the following:
1. The redemption price for sin. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
2. The terms of forgiveness. (a) Faith. “He that believeth on him is not condemned” (John 3:18). (b) Repentance. “Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Lk. 13:3). (c) Confession. “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God” (Acts 8:37). (d) Baptism. “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved . . .” (Mk. 16:16).
So, God’s grace provided mankind with a savior and acceptable terms of forgiveness. And Jesus urged, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). Truly, all mankind can still be saved by grace through faith!
Guardian of Truth XXVIII: 11, p. 336
June 7, 1984