Grace Brings Salvation

Christmas has always been one of the hardest and best seasons of the year for me. This season always strikes both April and me with a bit of loneliness. Several of our closest loved ones died in December. 

BUT we realize it’s THE best time of the year for all Christians because it’s the celebration of the hope and peace that came to earth in a tiny little baby boy named Jesus. “A virgin shall conceive, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people for their sins.” Christmas is THE season of GRACE!  Just think about it.  On that first Christmas, waiting became receiving, hope was fulfilled, prayers were answered, and prophecy was fulfilled. 

Christmas is THE season of GRACE because:

  1. Grace describes God’s heart toward humanity even after we continue to sin against Him. God’s grace is the source and supply of our salvation from sin and its consequences. Most people are confused about salvation. BUT Christmas is God’s unmistakable revelation on how to be saved; i.e., only through the indescribable gift that He gave to the world that first Christmas. Do you recall the way that Paul framed this idea when writing to his dear friend Titus? He said that “the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.”


  1. Grace anchors me to truth. John’s “nativity” story shoots off in a totally different direction than the Synoptic Gospels. John focuses on the “eternal” ancestry of Jesus and shouts that with the arrival of Jesus “grace and truth” came in perfect harmony. Our love of the doctrines of grace must always be bounded by the truth. Grace that ignores truth is no grace at all. It’s mislabeled, heartless indifference.


  1. Grace produces joy. I stumbled on a quote in the Christian History magazine by Martin Luther recently about JOY found in the Christmas story. He wrote that “there is such richness and goodness in this Nativity that if we should see and deeply understand, we should be dissolved in perpetual joy.” There was a lot of joy that first Christmas time. Remember how Luke records it, “There were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord.’”


  1. Grace teaches me how to respond to others. If God treats me with such grace, I need to respect and honour others in the same manner. Grace follows grace. As Jesus taught us to pray, “Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who trespass against us.” It’s no accident that the Bible describes the act of generosity as an act of grace. “But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8). Christians celebrate God’s indescribable gift in part by generously giving from what He has entrusted to us. Grace begets grace. Kindness and generosity begets kindness and generosity.


Join me this coming Sunday morning church family when we begin a four-part study following the theme of Christmas Grace! See you at either the 9AM or the 11AM service. 
Pastor Deric


The Cross is God’s way of making sure that no human being can boast in His presence. He chose the “foolish, weak, low and despised” people of this planet to “shame and silence” the “strong” of this world. In a word, He speaks THE truth, HIS truth, to man’s power (man’s misguided concept of power).

THE truth is that only He can lift us out of the mess we have made of our lives and of our world.  Only He can give us the light and life we need. Only He can rescue and redeem us. And He does that and more. We cannot find our own way to God, let alone atone for our great sins. But He can gift it to us, and He did, at the Cross or “in Christ” (read 1 Corinthians 1:26-31).

God’s plan is that He calls the everyday, ordinary, run-of-the-mill people of the world and gives them extraordinary privileges and powers. He “hides” the way to eternal life from the “wise and learned” of this world and reveals it to “babes” (see Matthew 11:25). This plan was brilliantly revealed in the first Christmas story. The angelic announcement of the arrival of the Messiah was not to the ruling class of Jewish or Roman elites, but to the “lowly shepherds.” That’s how He is at work in the world to this day. He doesn’t work through the powerful, influential rulers of the world, He calls the lowly, the despised, and the forgotten.

He calls and transforms the most unlikely people of the world to confound the wise and powerful people of the world. It’s a great plan because no one can boast in His presence. Man’s incessant need to boast in his accomplishments is demolished in the presence of the Cross.  Because it is there that God did what we cannot do. He lifted us out of a miry pit and placed us upon a rock, THE Rock, Jesus Christ.

His plan is that He will give the weak, despised, rejected people of the world His own wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption. His plan has always been to work outside of man’s wisdom. This whole concept is not a put down of human beings and their great worth. It’s a declaration and reminder that we cannot save ourselves. He freely offers those who will come to Him in repentance and faith the most extraordinary gifts and privileges.

And all of this is so that “no human being might boast in the presence of God” that they have secured their own salvation and God is therefore indebted to forgive their sins. He must credit His righteousness to us, and He does so to the humble who call on Him for salvation.

That’s why Paul concludes 1 Corinthians Chapter 1 with the simple reminder that, “If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.” His writing is a quote from the book of Jeremiah where the Lord told the prophet, “This is what the Lord says: ‘Don’t let the wise boast in their wisdom, or the powerful boast in their power, or the rich boast in their riches. But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the Lord who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth, and that I delight in these things. I, the Lord, have spoken!’”

Feel like boasting? Boast in the true knowledge of God. Boast in His love. Boast in the one who brings justice and righteousness through the Cross of His dearly loved Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

I look forward to studying this idea with you church family. I hope to see you at the 9AM or the 11AM service on Sunday morning.

Pastor Deric