How Secure is Grace?

Scripture says, “by grace are you saved though faith and this is the gift of God.”  Without grace there would be no salvation.  I can never live good enough, do enough, or know enough to deserve salvation.  I will never be saved on my own.  I am righteous because God has declared me righteous.

By faith I obey the Gospel.  When I obey the gospel I accept the gift of God and I am reconciled to Him.  As a reconciled child of God I am exactly where God intended me to be.  I am again in relationship with the Lord.  

God created man in His image so that God and man could maintain a relationship rooted in the actions of the creator.   This relationship  was the reason man was created in God’s image.  Man’s sin placed an obstacle in the path of this relationship.  Jesus died so that payment for sin could be paid and this obstacle removed.  Once the payment was made and the sin obstacle removed the relationship could be re-established between God and man. 

The reconciliation of man is the desire of God.  Man can do nothing to bring this about.  This is always totally in the hands of God.  Once we understand the depth and purpose of what God did for us we must ask a question.  How secure are we in this grace God has provided? 

To answer the above question we must determine the source of grace.  As a child I was taught that grace was unmerited favor.  I was also taught that our reconciliation was two fold.  God did His part and man then did his part.  I was taught we both had a hand in bringing this grace concept about.  If we did our part, which was obeying the gospel, God would forgive our sins.  If we continued to do our part which was called remaining faithful we had a hope of salvation when we stood in judgment.  It was my understanding that if I committed a sin I must repent of and confess before God that sin or I would “fall from God’s unmerited favor or grace.”  I never quite knew if my relationship was secure because being in grace rested on my making certain I repented of and confessed every sin.  Actually under these circumstances whether I was in grace or had fallen from grace rested on my efforts.  To answer the question from the above paragraph, under these circumstances my efforts had become the source of grace.

The problem is we cannot be the source of grace or salvation.  Grace and salvation are a gift from God to man.  When I commit to God and follow in the likeness of Jesus death, burial, and resurrection by putting my Lord on in baptism I am accepting both grace and salvation.  Grace and salvation are always a gift from God.  God’s grace reconciles me to God when I accept the gift of salvation.  God’s grace puts me back in relationship with God.  My relationship with God doesn’t rest on my shoulders.  It rests with God.

How secure is grace?  It is as secure as my relationship with God.  1 John 1:7 tells us, “If we walk in the light as He is in the light we have fellowship one with another and the blood of Christ cleanseth us from our sins.”  This is telling us as long as we remain in and continue to build this relationship we will have fellowship with God.  Furthermore the gift of Jesus blood given to us by the grace of God will continue to take away the sin in our lives.

As long as I remain in relationship with God I remain in His grace.  This is why God tells us in 1 John 5:13, “These things are written that you may know that you have eternal life.”  Grace is as secure as salvation.  It is a gift that will always be with me unless I choose to turn my back on God.  I will always be covered with Christ blood unless I choose to sever my relationship with the Lord.  Then and only then will I fall from grace.  How secure is grace?  God’s grace is secure as our commitment to God Himself.

 

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7 Responses to How Secure is Grace?

  1. “Two-fold” grace, as you call it, reduces God to a machine. Sin, and you push His wrath button. Repent, and you push His grace button. He is a divine Person, who loves us and hates sin. Do we trust Him to be perfectly true to both of these aspects of His nature? Are we willing to try to reflect them in our lives, living fully by His grace? Great thoughts, Dell.

  2. Hi Dell, I lilke your blog and this particular post was excellent in my opinion. A couple of weeks ago, on my blog (www.jasonbrowning.net), I talked about how grace is unfair in the sense that we do not get what we really deserve. I took some heat for it because I didn’t “balance” it with a paragraph on obedience. You can read the post here: http://www.jasonbrowning.net/2009/02/do-we-really-want-fair.html.

    I have never thought it was a matter of disagreeing with whether or not we must obey, I don’t know of any Christian who really denies that. The point of dissension it seems to me, is who gets the credit for our salvation. Personally, I am not taking any credit. It is all God. Anything I do that is good, is the very least I can do and what I already owe Him to begin with. And since I can’t be perfect, my works cannot be what saves me. It’s impossible. I think in a lot of ways, grace is so incredible, we’re not supposed to be able to grasp or fathom it in its entirety.

    In any event, I appreciate your content as well as the demeanor with which you write. I have enjoyed reading your material.

  3. Brad says:

    Good post, Dell. I always think of Eph 2:1 – “And you were dead in your sins and trespasses…”

    Not too much a dead person can do about anything.

  4. Don says:

    Excellent Dell. Jason’s mention of people having to have grace coupled with obedience strikes right at the heart of the matter it seems. Blessings,

    Don

  5. Don Morrison says:

    Thanks Dell. “…and this, not of yourselves…” Whew! I can make it after all.

  6. Wayne McDaniel says:

    “Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not reckon sin, and in whose spirit there is no guile.” – Psalm 32:2

    “being confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
    – Phil. 1:6

    “And the God of peace himself sanctify you wholly; and may your spirit, soul and body be preserved entire, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. FAITHFUL IS HE THAT CALLS YOU, WHO WILL ALSO DO IT.”- 1 Th. 5:23-4

    The indwelling Spirit always leads humble hearts to confess our need of Jesus.

  7. Guy says:

    I agree with your thought’s and would add that a person, through neglect, (resting on their laurels) can also fall away from God and His wonderful Grace; returning to the world over the course of time.

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