The concept of unmerited favor. In the OT, God’s actions are suffused with grace. God loved Israel in spite of its puny numbers (Deut 7:6-9) and rescued the community from the howling wilderness, encircling it with care (Deut 32:10). God kept covenant with Israel even when the covenant was violated by the people (Ezek 16:8) and brought the captives home from Babylon (Isa 49:14-18). In the NT grace connotes God’s favor shown sinners through Jesus Christ. Historically condemned as “sinners,” Gentiles gain entrance to the messianic community through the “gift” (Rom 3:24) or “free gift” (Rom 5:15) of grace (Gal 2:17-21; Rom 4:16). But Paul cautioned against using grace as a license to sin, lest believers “accept the grace of God in vain” (2Cor 6:1).

Deut 7:6-9

6For you are a people holy to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on earth to be his people, his treasured possession.7It ... View more

Deut 32:10

10He sustained him in a desert land,
in a howling wilderness waste;
he shielded him, cared for him,
guarded him as the apple of his eye.

Ezek 16:8

8I passed by you again and looked on you; you were at the age for love. I spread the edge of my cloak over you, and covered your nakedness: I pledged myself to ... View more

Isa 49:14-18

14But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me,
my Lord has forgotten me.”15Can a woman forget her nursing child,
or show no compassion for the child of her womb?
E ... View more

Rom 3:24

24they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Rom 5:15

15But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died through the one man's trespass, much more surely have the grace of God and the free gift in t ... View more

Gal 2:17-21

17But if, in our effort to be justified in Christ, we ourselves have been found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not!18But if I build u ... View more

Rom 4:16

16For this reason it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his descendants, not only to the adherents of the la ... View more

2Cor 6:1

1As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain.

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