grace for grace
Once again the apostle John makes another reference to John the Baptist. There was a way John the Baptist expressed his testimony. He was the voice of the one crying. He followed the exact same pattern of the Old Testament prophets. If we had that kind of passion in presenting Jesus Christ there is no telling how much reception the King of kings would receive for Him. I am not saying we have to shout or cry but I am saying people have inner radar inside themselves to see how much passion we have in our spirit. If there is no Holy Spirit conviction about what we are presenting how can we expect the other person or group to accept apathy? Even if we are sharing the gospel the proper way people still may be hesitant to come to Jesus Christ. This is one reason we have to be constantly walking with our Lord and Savior. In the case of John the Baptist he gave a public testimony but this is the issue --- we are to be assured and convicted of the truth.
(15) "John bare witness of Him, and cried, saying, This was He of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for He was before me. (16) And of His fulness have all we received, and grace for grace." John 1: 15 - 16.
John the Baptist clearly said he was a forerunner of Jesus Christ and in like manner we are always to take the lower seat to Jesus Christ. Do we do the saving or does Jesus Christ do the saving? The answer would have to be obvious. We are washed in the blood of Jesus Christ. We are just the messenger but we better deliver the message with the conviction of the Holy Spirit based on what the Bible teaches in His Word. Remember we are testifying for the Son of the Highest. Our message of Jesus Christ must prefer Him and His interest before ourselves and our interests.
This passage says … "He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for He was before me." God dispenses His gifts according to His wisdom and many times according to history this crosses hands. If Jesus Christ was before John the Baptist He was obvious before Abraham. Jesus Christ is from eternity past so in respect to supremacy He is our Master but we are His messengers. The real question is are we allowing Jesus Christ to be our Lord? If Jesus is not truly our Master how can we possibly expect to be an effective witness for Him?
When verse sixteen says, "And of His fulness have all we received, and grace for grace." This phrase is also in John 1:14. The incarnate Word is full of grace and truth who is Jesus Christ Himself. The fountain of fulness we have received as His children is grace and truth. Hopefully it is overflowing in our spirit. We can not conjure this up within ourselves so obvious God must grant this blessing to us as His children. Notice grace for grace is repeated because we have to keep coming to God for fresh manna. Heaven is not cheap because this place is full of grace. Why would God settle and give us day old manna? Grace is a gift, it is rich and it is invaluable. Grace is the goodwill of God to us and the good work in us because the goodwill of God works the good work of grace. We are so blessed to receive grace from the fulness of Jesus Christ. The way grace for grace is phrased in this passage is singular so to be recipients of the unsearchable riches of the grace of Jesus Christ is worth searching. Grace is free but we can not be passive to receive the grace of God. We receive this wonderful gift but it is for Jesus Christ.
If this passage is saying grace for grace we do not have to be theologians to figure out this is abundance. This is a blessing that is poured out in our spirit but we must ask for this abundance on a daily basis. If we have this in our heart then we will never desire to keep it to ourselves.
The grace in us changes us into the same image of Jesus Christ. The Son of God is perfect and we are not but there is a conforming process when we receive His grace on a consistent basis because it is the exact opposite of sin. If you do not know the true Messiah and desire to step forward accept Jesus Christ into your heart as your Lord and Savior by repenting of your sins and invite the Son of God into your life. This is the wise choice.
If you just made that all important eternal decision or if you have been a Christian for a good while read or memorize the Bible and ask for the grace of God through His Son Jesus Christ on a daily basis because this is invaluable. Grace for grace is offered to us but we can not settle for day old manna. This heavenly call is worth the pursuit.
God bless you,