Paul used those three words in the greetings and words similar to them in the closings of his letters. “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” resounds in the opening verses of each of his epistles, except Romans, until he comes to his letters to Timothy, where he adds “mercy” to his repertoire. In a couple of letters, the “our” and “the” are interchanged. In Philemon, he drops the word mercy.
“Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,” and its variations close each of his letters.
Because he loved Christ and he loved the people of his day—especially those who loved Christ. Part of displaying that love was to intercede for them, and that’s why you can read some of the greatest prayers in the Bible from Paul’s writings. We’ll have some of those on this site for you shortly.
There’s a lot in store for you here. We’ll be introducing prayer guides. We’ll be presenting prayers. We’ll have free downloads to help in your prayer life. We’ll offer book on prayers and praying. We’ll have a section for and honor prayer requests, and we’ll ask you to share your prayers so that all might participate with them.
We hope you draw closer to our Savior by visiting often.
In the meantime, may “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”
IBG / JF
Lord God, we praise You for Your love and wisdom, Your guiding care, and protection. Holy Spirit, please keep our minds fixed on Jesus today and every day. Let His love and influence show through us in everything that we do, in every thought we conceive, in every word that we utter, in every glance we take, every encounter we make, every influence we might have.
We all, in different ways, are broken. Despite that, You love us. And we know that it is a whole lot easier to go through a crisis or trial or suffering with You than it is to go through it alone without You. You are the One who does not forsake. You are so faithful.
We know that You are with us on our journey through any crisis, that we can call upon You for help and energy and wisdom and relief. We know that You will help us bear the pain, navigate the issues, and that You will be with us when we come out of the trial, that we will be stronger by Your presence and enriched by your grace.
Thank You, Lord, for making us Your sons and advocates for Christ.
Meditating on Scripture verses should always be an illuminating and rewarding spiritual experience with God. It helps to approach your time with a proper attitude and the right appetite. Remember, spending time in His Word is a first step toward His throne and communication with Him.
Here’s a short request that I pray before immersing my soul and my spirit with our Savior. Perchance, you might like to use it, too:
Lord, let me know You as You, not as others profess You to be, not how I want You to be.
Let me know You as You are, as I may get to know You in Your Word.
Jesus, You became man to redeem us and to teach us. Speak to me in Your words every time I open this book, so that I may know You, the man, my God, my King, my Savior.
I wrote this in my NIV Study Bible on April 14, 2008, in the white space to the introduction of the Gospel of Matthew. I have turned to it many, many times since. I could add to it; but, why? It is short and sweet, and so meaningful to me.
Do you have one like it?
I pray for the soul of the individual who hacked this site and others in August and September. While the hacks caused countless hours of frustration and anxiety, loss of reputation, damage to credibility, plus weeks of downtime, I forgive the person and pray to God that He might bless this individual and cause him (or her) to turn his (or her) energies into something productive and away from things destructive.
I also thank God for the energy to persevere and get this site and 17 others healthy and back online. I thank Him for the knowledge that I’ve gained in discovery and in weeding out malware, plus learning how to protect, secure and strengthen websites of all types. Most importantly, I am so grateful for His presence and guidance in overcoming the evil inflicted by some lost soul. Oh, that this person would turn from his or her wicked ways and see that so much more can be gained in a life with God!