If grace were just for me, and not God’s gift to all in need, I might rejoice in my solo salvation and never be a different soul. But “the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all” (Titus 2:11)—for every individual, yes—but also for the whole of us as Jesus’ faithful way to live with and forgive each other. Grace truly known always grows into graciousness: the living shows we’re starting to perceive how great the gift is. When I extend the grace of God, I take it deeper in my life. When I forgive, I learn how much there is in me that needs the Lord’s forgiveness. Grace grows on us, and grows in us, and grows through us. So stay in grace. -Bill Knott.
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We search—in vain—for things in us that might cause God to gift us grace. It couldn’t be our good behavior; perhaps our good intentions? Perhaps our hot/cold love for God on one day stirred Him to extend the mercy we must have? No; no; and no. Grace has no market counterpart—no trade, no barter, no equivalence. It’s Jesus’ sovereign choice to give us what we didn’t earn, we don’t deserve, and on bad days, we even spurn. Our only claim on Christ is on His unforced choice to love those He created; sacrificed Himself to save; and ever intercedes for. Rejoice, oh heavens! Be amazed, oh earth! And stay in grace. -Bill Knott
In Other Words is the opinion page of Adventist Review staff: wide ranging, as befits the thinking of a group spanning multiple generations and encompassing more than half a dozen nationalities; spiritually earnest, as reflecting the thinking of a team of mature Christian professionals in areas as varied as journalism and technology, education and business, biblical studies and theology; sometimes lighthearted, always relevant. Gerald Kingbeil is the associate editor of the Adventist World magazine. www.adventistworld.org
God’s Judgment of the Living - Once upon a time people thought of God and Santa Claus somewhat alike, except for Santa’s “making a list and checking it twice.” God was nice, they claimed; but lists and checks are too judgmental. Today’s news shows how long evil can stay hidden. People are relieved that there are records that help condemn the wicked and free the just after years and decades of oppression, abuse and suffering. It’s no different with God. He, too, has carefully kept records. He, too, has a judgment schedule.
Reminiscent of the time when part of a family physician’s modus operandi was visiting patients in their homes, “House Call”—a regular column in Adventist Review magazine provides evidenced-based and biblically sound health-related counsel to AR readers and now listeners. Drs. Peter N. Landless and Zeno L. Charles-Marcel, both board certified physicians address physical and emotional concerns from a whole-person health-care perspective—as well as offer the added benefits of biblical wisdom. www.positivechoices.com
There is no grudging in God’s grace—no “Alright, this one time” or “Even though you don’t deserve it.” He never makes forgiveness hang on promises to not sin again. “He knows our frame,” the Scriptures say: “He remembers we are dust.” And all our promises—like those who made them—are dusty, broken, unreliable. God forgives as only a Father can—more eager to restore the relationship than recall the rebellion; more focused on what we may become than what we did to wound Him. Grace flows to us because God’s heart is always love—unstoppable, without a limit. If you could quantify such love, then you, dear friend, would be much greater than He is—and that is rank absurdity. Receive this love. And stay in grace. -Bill Knott
Global View is a column of biblical and spiritual encouragement urging listeners to stay close to Christ and His Word as they carry out His mission for the world through the Holy Spirit pointing people to Christ’s soon coming. Ted N.C. Wilson is president of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. www.adventistworld.org
On our best days, we fall far short of our inspiring goals. We say the angry words, repeat the wicked gossip, upset the ones we’re pledged to love. And were it not for grace, our story is an endlessly repeating tale of good intentions and bad performances. But grace upends what keeps us mired in our sins, for grace proclaims release from guilt, redemption from our foolishness. We get a new and wonderful reset each time we come to Jesus. The slate is cleaned; the record washed; the sins removed as far as east can ever be from west. This is the genius of the gospel: We need not stay what we once were. We need not be what we are now. Grace pulls us toward the joy for which we were created, and puts the hope back in our story. So move toward joy. And stay in grace. -Bill Knott
When grace has lived a while in us, we wake one day to learn how much we’ve changed, how everything is different. We speak new kindness to the ones who mock us, or who irritate our peace. We listen well to those who never seemed worth hearing. We find our hearts have been enlarged, with room for those we feared or scorned. This is the sign of Jesus living in us, and yes, we never saw it coming. Christ changes every heart He owns, replacing stoniness with love. We get the double blessing of eternity and now—of seeing life renewed in us and all with whom we’re planted. His seed that grows in secret still does yield the sweetest fruit. So stay in grace. -Bill Knott
"Journeys with Jesus" is an intimate, personal look at the walk we all have with our Savior. Inspirational, heart-tugging, thought-provoking vignettes of life's journey and life's decisions. Most of all, it points us to our Father, our Friend, as the Source of all wisdom, comfort, and peace.