Combining these ideas of intensity and relationship, it is plain to see that when God shows His chesed in a covenant relationship, His grace is firm, persistent, and steadfast. To substantiate this, Snaith has shown that out of forty-three cases when chesed is linked to another noun, the following is true: in twenty-three instances it is linked with fidelity, firmness, or truth; in seven with covenant; in four with righteousness; in one with prosperity; in one with stronghold; and in seven with kindness and compassion. Thus the thought of faithfulness, not the ideas of kindness and mercy, predominates in the grace relationship. “These detailed instances involve a preponderance in favor of the meaning ‘firmness, steadfastness’ which is often neglected. We do not desire by any means to deny the meanings ‘loving-kindness, mercy’ which chesed often has. On the contrary, our aim is to insist that these renderings are often far too weak to convey the strength, the firmness, and the persistence of God’s sure love.” — Charles C. Ryrie, The Grace of God (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1963), 17.


I have just completed a seven-part Bible Study called Ancient Words. It explores seven key Hebrew words we need to understand in order to really understand the gospel. This article is an excerpt from this Bible study. The Bible Study is available on Amazon. It is also avail as well as part of my Good Questions Have Groups Talking subscription service.

This service is like Netflix for Bible Lessons. You pay a low monthly, quarterly or annual fee and get access to all the lessons. New lessons that correspond with three of Lifeway’s outlines are automatically included, as well as a backlog of thousands of lessons. Each lesson consists of 20 or so ready-to-use questions that get groups talking, as well as answers from well-known authors such as David Jeremiah, Charles Swindoll and Max Lucado. For more information, or to sign up, click here.

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