grace


grace
In the OT, God's kindliness towards the people of Israel (Zech. 12:10—a ‘spirit of grace’ in LXX), which consists in the forgiveness of sins (Exod. 33:19). He gives graces (favours) which are undeserved gifts of his love (Isa. 63:7). This was the basic meaning of the word which is found in the NT when grace is linked to Jesus, who represents in his person God's graciousness towards mankind. Jesus is himself the fullness of grace and truth (John 1:14–17). In Paul's thought it is by the grace of God that believers like himself were called, and therefore we are deprived of any grounds for boasting (Rom. 3:27; 1 Cor. 1:31); Paul must give God the glory for the free gift of salvation which cannot be earned by his own efforts. There now exists a ‘rule of grace’ (Rom. 5:21) and to live under grace is to live in the obedience of faith, with holiness as its aim (Rom. 6:15–22).
What is true of grace, bringing people into the redeemed community, is true equally of the callings to offices (‘apostleship’, Rom. 12:3) and the other gifts or graces (Rom. 12:6) which are bestowed on the Body as necessary for its life (1 Cor. 12:6–8), though these gifts are not of equal importance. The Greek charisma, from charis (a grace), emphasizes the free nature of the gifts received; and, by a slight extension, Paul can use the word charis to mean an acknowledgement of the gift, which leads to thanksgiving—hence the English ‘grace’ before meals.
Paul also mentions grace received in suffering (2 Cor. 12:9; Phil. 1:19); and the collection for the Church in Jerusalem is a grace (1 Cor. 16:3), for it is the work of the spirit who prompts the generosity of believers.
It is indeed difficult to differentiate ‘grace’ from the ‘Holy Spirit’ in the NT. Unfortunately in later Christian theology, under the influence of Augustine, grace came to be regarded as a ‘thing’, a kind of impersonal entity or quasi-physical force or power which lights upon those predestined to absorb it.

Dictionary of the Bible.

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  • GRÂCE — Le mot «grâce» et la réalité qu’il désigne ont une importance centrale dans la vie de l’humanité, et particulièrement dans l’histoire et la théologie chrétiennes. S’il est vrai que tout homme souffre d’un sentiment diffus et non expliqué de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • grace — Grace, bien et plaisir qu on fait à celuy qui ne l a deservi, Gratia. Bonnegrace, Elegantia. Bonnegrace et contenance, Palaestra, B. ex Cic. Cela n a point de grace, Non habet genium, Bud. ex Martiale. Qui a mauvaise grace, Inconcinnus homo,… …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • grace — GRACE. s. f. Faveur, bon office qu on fait à quelqu un sans y estre obligé. S il vous accorde telle chose, ce sera une pure grace. je vous demande cette grace. je vous demande cela en grace. faites moy la grace de .... je tiens cela de vostre… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Grace — (gr[=a]s), n. [F. gr[^a]ce, L. gratia, from gratus beloved, dear, agreeable; perh. akin to Gr. ? to rejoice, cha ris favor, grace, Skr. hary to desire, and E. yearn. Cf. {Grateful}, {Gratis}.] 1. The exercise of love, kindness, mercy, favor;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Grace — may refer to:Religion* Grace (prayer), said before or after a meal * Divine grace, unearned favors received from God. * Prevenient grace, an Augustine Christian theological concept * Irresistible grace, a Calvinistic Christian theological concept …   Wikipedia

  • Grace — bezeichnet: Grace (Vorname), ein weiblicher Vorname Grace (Fernsehserie), eine US amerikanische Fernsehserie Grace (Band), ein Dancemusic Projekt von Paul Oakenfold und Steve Osborne (1994–1997) Grace (Album), ein Album von Jeff Buckley, das… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Grace — (en español: Gracia) puede referirse a: Contenido 1 Personajes 2 Música 3 Miscelánea 4 Véase también …   Wikipedia Español

  • GRACE — Typ: Forschungssatellit Land (Organisation): USA/Deutschland (NASA/DLR) NSSDC ID: 2002 012A/B Missionsdaten Trägerrakete …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • grace — [greɪs] noun [uncountable] 1. additional time that is allowed before a payment must be made: • Paraguay was granted a new period of 20 years, with eight years grace, for the payment of its $436 million debt to Brazil. • They have a grace period… …   Financial and business terms

  • Grace — • Leads to four articles on the subject Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Grace     Grace     † …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • grace — [grās] n. [ME < OFr < L gratia, pleasing quality, favor, thanks < gratus, pleasing < IE base * gwer , to lift up the voice, praise > Sans gṙṅāti, (he) sings, praises & OIr bard, bard] 1. beauty or charm of form, composition,… …   English World dictionary