Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 3:18 NLT
Grace is a person, Jesus, living his life in and through you and me. Grace empowers us to live a righteous and holy life (2 Co. 9:8, 2 Cor. 12:1-10, Titus 2:11-14). Grace is God’s heart extending itself towards us as he initiates in us the ability to overcome our weaknesses, failures, and inadequacies. Jesus in us empowers us to obey scripture, love people, and serve God. Therefore, grace is not the freedom to sin, but the freedom not to sin. The foremost characteristic of living by grace is trust in the redeeming work of Jesus Christ. This trust frees us to enjoy God’s adequacy in the midst of our overwhelming struggles and troubling inconsistencies. Grace is a present reality for children of the burning heart, we find Christ ready and available in this moment. As a result, we are enabled to say, “no” to unrighteousness and “yes” to holiness. Everyday, we can grow in the grace of Christ as we learn to hold steady in his presence.
When the New Testament speaks about the fullness of grace which we find in Christ, it does not mean only forgiveness, pardon and justification. Christ has done much more for us. He died for us, but he also lived for us. Now he has sent his own Spirit to us so that we might draw on his strength. He grew in grace, and when we draw on his power we shall likewise grow in grace.
Sinclair B. Ferguson, Grow in Grace (Carlisle, Pa.: Banner of Truth Trust, 1989), 10