Posted by: rcottrill | May 30, 2012

Grace Greater Than Our Sin

Words: Julia Harriette Johnson (b. Jan. 21, 1849; d. Mar. 6, 1919)
Music: Daniel Brink Towner (b. Apr. 5, 1850; d. Oct. 3, 1919)

Wordwise Hymns
The Cyber Hymnal

Note: Julia Johnson’s father was the pastor of First Presbyterian Church, in Peoria, Illinois. She served as superintendent of the Sunday School there for over forty years. Not only did she write about 500 hymns, she also wrote lesson material for Primary age children (ages 6 to 8) for the David C. Cook Publishing Company.

One of the most thrilling subjects in the Scriptures–especially in the New Testament–is the grace of God. There was certainly grace bestowed before the coming of Christ, otherwise no one could be forgiven and saved before then. But the coming of the Saviour unleashed a flood-tide of grace (Jn. 1:16).

CH-1) Marvelous grace of our loving Lord,
Grace that exceeds our sin and our guilt!
Yonder on Calvary’s mount outpoured,
There where the blood of the Lamb was spilled.

Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that will pardon and cleanse within;
Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that is greater than all our sin.

CH-2) Sin and despair, like the sea waves cold,
Threaten the soul with infinite loss;
Grace that is greater, yes, grace untold,
Points to the refuge, the mighty cross.

We learn about God’s wonderful grace in His Word, which is itself “the word of His grace” (Acts 20:32). Terms such as grace and gracious are found about 175 times, especially in the epistles. There we learn that:

¤ It was grace, God’s unearned, unmerited favour, that brought the Lord Jesus to this earth to die for our sins (II Cor. 8:9).

¤ Through faith in our Saviour, we are justified (pronounced righteous) by the grace of God (Rom. 3:24; Tit. 3:7; cf. Eph. 2:8-9).

¤ From Him we have “the grace of life” (I Pet. 3:7).

CH-3) Dark is the stain that we cannot hide.
What can avail to wash it away?
Look! There is flowing a crimson tide,
Brighter than snow you may be today.

¤ He is “the God of all grace” (I Pet. 5:10), so what we receive is “the grace of God” (vs. 12), and He grants it to the humble–those who realize their deep need (I Pet. 5:5).

¤ God’s grace is exceedingly rich (Eph. 1:7; 2:7), and abundant (Rom. 5:20; II Cor. 9:8). It is also “manifold,” meaning varied, and many-sided (I Pet. 4:10).

¤ He is ready and willing to give us more grace for the asking. We come to His throne of grace in prayer and He bestows a sufficiency of grace (II Cor. 12:9; Heb. 4:16; Jas. 4:6).

¤ We are to continue to “grow in grace” (II Pet. 3:18).

Years ago, when I was teaching at a Bible college, we had an instructor on staff, Phil Powers, who emphasized and reemphasized the grace of God with his students. When the time came for graduation, one of the young men received his diploma from Dr. Powers, then raised his hand to heaven with a smile, and shouted “Grace!” He is now serving the Lord as a pastor in Idaho.

Grace is a subject we need to study about, preach and teach about, talk about, witness about, sing about, and pray about far more than we do. It’s what makes the Christian faith utterly distinct from all the false and man-made religions.

1) Explain what is meant by the last statement. Why is this the case?

2) What about making a list of some great hymns about the grace of God, if needs be teaching them to your congregation, and singing them often?

Wordwise Hymns
The Cyber Hymnal


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