God’s Favor versus Grace

Consider Favor vs. Grace

Intro:
I consider myself an old-fashioned person. I grew up trying to please my parents. I wanted to please my schoolteachers. I wanted my friends to like me. I even wanted the Sunday School teachers to be pleased with me. Some of that could be good. Some of that could lead to self-esteem issues.
I’m telling you this because I am the same way when it comes to God. I want God pleased with me. I want His FAVOR. God are you pleased?

Gen 6:8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. KJV [Rendered 'Favor' in the NASB]

FAVOR, FAVORED In the NT
A. Noun.
charis (xa/ri$, NT:5485) denotes (a) objectively, “grace in a person, graciousness,” (b) subjectively, (1) “grace on the part of a giver, favor, kindness,” (2) “a sense of favor received, thanks.” It is rendered “favor” in Luke 1:30; 2:52; Acts 2:47; 7:10, 46; 24:27 and 25:9, RV (for KJV, “pleasure”); 25:3; see more fully under GRACE.

B. Verb.
charitoo (xarito/w, NT:5487), akin to A, to endow with charis, primarily signified “to make graceful or gracious,” and came to denote, in Hellenistic Greek, “to cause to find favor,” Luke 1:28, “highly favored” (marg., “endued with grace”); in Eph 1:6, it is translated “made… accepted,” KJV, “freely bestowed,” RV (lit., “graced”); it does not here mean to endue with grace. Grace implies more than favor; grace is a free gift, favor may be deserved or gained. (from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)

Do you believe God blesses those who are found in His favor? Isn’t it logical to expect God to bless you with His gracious acts if you are found to be in His favor?
Psalms 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. KJV

Proverbs 3:1-7
3 1 My child, never forget the things I have taught you. Store my commands in your heart. 2 If you do this, you will live many years, and your life will be satisfying. 3 Never let loyalty and kindness leave you! Tie them around your neck as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart. 4 Then you will find favor with both God and people, and you will earn a good reputation. 5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. 7 Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil. [Holy Bible, New Living Translation ®, copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.]

Proverbs 3:1-7
3 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: 2 For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee. 3 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: 4 So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man. 5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. 7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. KJV

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A sermon Outline

Ephesians 1:1-14 The Position of the Christian

I. Praise for Redemption 1:1-14
A. Salutation from Paul 1:1-2
B. Chosen by the Father 1:3-6
C. Redeemed by the Son 1:7-12
D. Sealed by the Spirit 1:13-14
(from Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Copyright © 1986, Thomas Nelson Publishers)

Eph 1:1-14
This letter is from Paul, chosen by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus. I am writing to God’s holy people in Ephesus, who are faithful followers of Christ Jesus. 2 May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.
Spiritual Blessings

3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. 4 Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. 5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. 8 He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.

9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.

12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him. Holy Bible, New Living Translation ®, copyright © 1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 8:32-36
32 Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways. 33 Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not. 34 Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. 35 For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the Lord. 36 But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death. KJV

Proverbs 12:2 A good man obtaineth favour of the Lord: but a man of wicked devices will he condemn. KJV
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FAVOR in the OT
A. Noun.
Ratson OT:7522, “favor; goodwill; acceptance; will; desire; pleasure.” The 56 occurrences of this word are scattered throughout Old Testament literature.

Ratson represents a solid reaction of the superior to an inferior.

This word represents the position one enjoys before a superior who is favorably disposed toward him.

Being “accepted” means that God personally feels well disposed toward the petitioner.

Ratson also signifies a voluntary or arbitrary decision. Ezra told the people of Israel to do the “will” of God, to repent and observe the law of Moses Ezra 10:11. This law was dictated by God’s own nature; His nature led Him to be concerned for the physical well-being of His people. Ultimately, His laws were highly personal; they were simply what God wanted His people to be and do. Thus the psalmist confessed his delight in doing God’s “will,” or His law Ps 40:8. (from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)

B. Verb.

ratsah OT:7521, “to be pleased with or favorable to, be delighted with, be pleased to make friends with; be graciously received; make oneself favored.” This verb, which occurs 50 times in the Old Testament,
(from Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)

Closing
My brothers and sisters, may you be found walking in the favor of God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, are you pleased?

Ephesians 1:1-14 The Position of the Christian

I. Praise for Redemption 1:1-14
A. Salutation from Paul 1:1-2
B. Chosen by the Father 1:3-6
C. Redeemed by the Son 1:7-12
D. Sealed by the Spirit 1:13-14
(from Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Copyright © 1986, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
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About Hoss

Married w/ 1 daughter & 3 step-children . Ordained minister. I do supply preaching every opportunity I get. Currently employed in a state prison system. Wife & I own a flower shop in a nearby city. I am approaching my mid 50's, although I certainly don't look like it.
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One Response to God’s Favor versus Grace

  1. Excellent post! For me, it served as a reminder that God’s grace is not all that Christians should be concerned with. Although doing good works and following the commandments are not the means to get to heaven (as we are saved by the free gift of grace), they are an expression of love to God and in His eyes we may find favor through these acts. I am sure many will be blessed by reading these words.

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