8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
8 In God we have boasted continually,
and we will give thanks to your name forever.
1 For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
Amazing Grace is a timeless song that has touched many lives throughout history. It was written in 1776 by John Newton and the chorus was added by Chris Tomlin in 2006. This addition of the chorus re-lauched the song into churches everywhere. The song has a strong melody and a rich theology that pulls from so many different Scriptures. The grace of God is something that is not stressed or understood enough. The grace of God provides “not only an assurance of life after death but a new life in Christ in the present, a life that death cannot take from us. The work of grace is to fit us for the kingdom of God by already setting up that kingdom in our hearts and letting it be manifested in both church and world through our lives.” It is in God that we can boast. It is because of grace that we are saved, it is by grace that our chains are gone! All of the sin and shame that has bound us is no longer binding.
The verses show powerful truths about the Christian walk. Verse 1 shows that redemption comes through the blood of Jesus. Our humanity, or wretchedness, has been redeemed because of the sacrifice of Jesus. Like the prodigal son, we have strayed from our God. We have ran from our Father. We have spoiled the riches that we possess. However, God continually opens His arms and welcomes us home. God finds us in our darkness. God pursues us in our brokenness. God opens our eyes to see the truth of the Gospel.
Verse 2 speaks of the presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. It is the Holy Spirit in our lives that create in us fear of the Lord. It is this same Spirit that calms our nerves and quiets our fears. The Holy Spirit is the grace of God manifested in us. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior the Spirit rushes into our hearts. The Spirit is the person of the Trinity that seals our inheritance until eternity is here. It was by the Spirit that grace became human in the person of Jesus.
Verse 3 points to the reality that hope comes only from God. All of the blessings in our lives flows from God. All of the protection in our lives comes from God. In the midst of the book of Lamentations, the writer declares the faithfulness of God and the reality that God is our portion. In our pain and turmoil God is faithful. In our hurt grace still abounds.
Verse 4 ends the song with a picture of the new heaven, new earth. A time when the glory of God is in our midst creating the light that the sun once gave. In the beginning God said, “Let there be light.” The sun was not yet created…from where did the light come? The light was the glory of God and His glory will once again be the earth’s source of light. The same God who controls the universe will come and live with us forever.
The chains of sin and death will be forever broken! Freedom in its fullness will be experienced. Joy in its fullness will be experienced. Life in its fullness will be experienced.