to extend grace

Paul, in two parallel texts in Ephesians and Colossians, encourages us to extend grace to one another (Greek: charizomai). This is not reflected in most translations, because they translate with forgiveness. But forgiveness is different from giving grace. When we think of forgiveness we think of forgiveness or remission. But giving grace is much more. It is favoring the other, giving something: namely joy. That puts these texts in a completely different light:

Ephesians 4
32 But be kind and gracious to one another, showing grace to one another, just as God in Christ has given you grace.

Colossians 3
13 Bear with one another and show mercy one to another, if anyone has a complaint against another; as the Lord also gives you grace, so also you.

grace given
Both verses say that we can show mercy because we have also received mercy from God in Christ. What then does God give us, how does He grace us? What do we receive from Him? Paul answers this in the letter to Romans, where he again uses the word charizomai. .

Romans 8
32 How will He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, not also with Him graciously grant us all things?

We receive together with Christ: everything, all things! We are already blessed with every spiritual blessing in heaven in Christ (Eph. 1:3), but we will share in His position in the future as well. After all, He is the Head and we as the ecclesia are the body of Christ, to which the whole is subjected (Eph.1:22-23). So with Him we literally receive everything! Anyone who is so rich and is aware of it can share that wealth. We would give each other grace, that is, point to Him and what He gives us in Christ!

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