Grace = unmerited favor. God’s grace is when God generously gives you the good thing — salvation through Jesus — that you do not deserve, and all of the spiritual blessings that He gives you. None of us deserve God’s grace. But in Christ and through Christ we receive the true grace of God.
It has been said that GRACE is:
8 For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift— 9 not from works, so that no one can boast.
Peter writes about the true grace of God. He was writing to first-century followers of Jesus living in the region that is modern-day Turkey. His words as Holy Scripture apply to us today just like they did to them.
1 Peter 5:12-14
12 I have written you this brief letter through Silvanus (I know him to be a faithful brother) to encourage you and to testify that this is the true grace of God. Take your stand in it! 13 The church in Babylon, also chosen, sends you greetings, as does Mark, my son. 14 Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.
The true grace of God changes your life. Peter’s life was changed by Jesus: from fisherman to disciple, from one who denied even knowing Jesus to becoming an unashamed proclaimer of the good news found only in Jesus. Peter also mentions others whose lives have been changed by Jesus: Silvanus, Mark, and the church in “Babylon” (most likely a code name for the church in Rome). The true grace of God changes your life.
The true grace of God changes you from darkness to light, from spiritual death to spiritual life, from being an enemy of God to being a child of God, from a person who is on your way to hell to a person who is guaranteed a home in heaven. The true grace of God gives you forgiveness of sin, new life, purpose and meaning, and much, much more. The true grace of God changes your life.
The true grace of God gives you a new family. Peter refers to Silvanus as his brother. He refers to his friend Mark as a son. He talks about showing familial affection — giving a kiss of love — toward one another. Whether or not you give holy kisses to your brothers and sisters in Christ is probably a cultural and personal decision, but the words of Peter remind us that as followers of Jesus we are part of God’s forever family. You do not abandon your biological family, rather your family has just expanded and grown. The true grace of God gives you a new family.
The true grace of God makes you strong. Peter writes his letter to encourage them. He encourages them to remain strong in their faith in Jesus. For these first-century followers of Jesus, they were in danger of verbal and physical persecution by the opponents of Christianity. And they faced enemies such as fear, guilt, greed, and the like that sought to hinder their work and witness for Christ. Peter encourages them to be strong in their faith, to be strong in Christ. Through prayer and spiritual strength, they could stand strong. The true grace of God makes you strong.
The true grace of God gives you peace. Peter writes a final statement: “Peace to all of you who are in Christ.” Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Knowing Christ gives you a peace that passes all understanding. Jesus is your peace. He calms the storms of your life and the storms that seek to overwhelm you. Trust in Him. Lean on Him. Know His peace. The true grace of God gives you peace.