In early 1999 I had begun to consider some of the themes that were common to all of the apostolic writings and records we have of their teachings. One thing I found was that the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ was very important to them all. At that time I posted an article on my web site entitled “Superabounding Grace!”
The title was taken from Paul’s letter to the Romans, chapter 5, verse, 20: “where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.”
More recently I have become aware of objections that some have concerning the way grace is being understood and taught in our day. They are concerned over what they call “hypergrace.” When people use the word “hyper,” they often use it negatively. When a child is “hyperactive,” doctors often prescribe drugs to calm the child down to make it easier for him to sit still and learn in school. When advertisers exaggerate the value of the product they are selling we call it “hype,” or when a point is stretched in an argument too far, we call it “hyperbole.” It seems that “hypergrace” is when the message of the grace of God is taken to the extreme.
But wait: the Bible actually uses the Greek equivalent to the English word “hyper,” when referring to the grace of God in Christ! In Romans 5:20, the Greek word that has been translated “much more abound” is “huperpleonazo” The “huper” in the word sounds like our English word, “super,” and is the basis for the way hyper is used in our language. It means “over, above, beyond, exceedingly, to excess.” That is where the title for my earlier article “Superabounding Grace,” came from.
God’s grace is over, above, beyond, exceeding and excessive! Sin abounded to all humanity but God’s grace is far greater, more than enough to save and restore humanity back to holiness, righteousness and fellowship with Him!
“In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.” NASU
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” NASU
God’s love and grace towards us is lavish, excessive, abounding, superabounding, overwhelming. His riches in Christ are unsearchable! It will take all of time and eternity for us to fully appreciate it!
From the earliest times there existed the danger that people would distort and misuse the message of salvation by grace through faith. Paul was fully aware of this danger and took pains to make his message clear. True grace is what it is. We can fail in our ability to explain it. We can misrepresent it. But we cannot change the very nature of God and His grace towards us. It is pure and without mixture.
Receive it as it has been offered to you in Christ Jesus.
The safest place for us to abide is in the whole counsel of God. The entire New Testament is about Christ and His grace. Even the warnings, rebukes and exhortations to live up to the calling wherein we have been called by Christ are expressions of His grace and love for us.
“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.” NASU
The true grace of God cannot be overemphasized. But be sure you are in the true grace of God. Any teaching that minimizes the importance of Godly living is not fully emphasizing grace, but putting limits on it. Anyone who twists other scriptures to fit their version of the Gospel of grace has misunderstood Christ and His grace. Those who love the Word of God receive it as it has been given. They are empowered and transformed by it, and equipped to discern any erroneous, however well intentioned teachings.
We do not live by bread alone, but by EVERY WORD that proceeds from the mouth of God!