Acts 20:32 And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.
The grace of God is the very heart of the Gospel and what makes Christianity different than all man-made religions. Religion is always man doing a work and offering it up to God for His acceptance. Christianity is totally based on a Divine work of God for man not a human work for God and offered to man for his acceptance. There’s been a big deal made out of calling grace a doctrine versus calling grace a Person who is Jesus. Some go so far as to say that grace is not a doctrine. Doctrine simply means a teaching, a body of teachings, or that which is taught.
Grace is both a doctrine and a Person. Acts 20:32 describes grace in terms of a topic or subject of discourse or the “word” of His grace (Greek word is “logos” and can mean an account; a subject of discourse; something said; a topic; a narrative). The more time we spend in the word of His grace (Acts 20:32) the more our doctrine will be sound on the topic of the Person of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul told his son in the faith, Timothy, “Thou therefore, my son be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus 2 Timothy 2:1.” Sounds like the grace of God is something in Christ Jesus not just Christ Jesus.
It can also be said that grace was also revealed to us in the Person of Jesus Christ. When He came in His first appearance, it is when grace appeared Titus 2:11. Jesus was the grace of God made flesh and the One who made it possible for us to reach God John 1:14, 17. It was God offering grace through the Person of Jesus Christ. He personified God’s grace in human form. The more we know Jesus, the more grace is revealed to us, and the deeper we fall in love with God.
My point is that for us to play doctrine against the Person of Jesus Christ is very dangerous in the times in which we live where there are many movements and preachers that downplay doctrine and breed the wrong belief about doctrine. This can play into the lie that doctrine is unimportant, unnecessary, unknowable, and truth is relative for each person. The Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:1-4 gave Timothy a warning about the day of an aversion to sound doctrine, “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” The Last Days would be characterized by:
- People would not endure sound doctrine (bear up under; tolerate; put up with; be able to sit in services listening to them).
- But after their own lusts make themselves the authority (or evaluate truth based on their own desires, morals, values, and opinions. Like Cain who redefined what acceptable service to God was; “I’ll serve God my way”).
- Heap to themselves teachers (pile up and look for teachers that agree with them to validate or support their error).
- Turn their ears from the truth and turn to substitutes (fables; myths – that which is fabricated in the mind or imagination but not objectively verifiable; untrue stories made up to teach lessons; legends; tales that have no foundation in the truth of Scripture).
Doctrine is important in these perilous times of deception. Spend some time in the Word of His grace Acts 20:32, get established in its doctrines (teachings), and you will get to know more about Jesus.