Grace Part 3

VI. That there is a true grace (1PE 5:12; COL 1:6) presupposes that there are perversions of grace. A. Here are some facts about the true grace wherein believers stand. 1. It is rooted in God’s elective purpose in Christ. 1PE 1:2; ROM 11:5; 2TI 1:9. 2. It actually produced eternal forgiveness of sins. EPH 1:7 c/w HEB 9:12. 3. It is justification by Christ, not by the law of Moses. ACT 13:38-43. 4. It is free (given out of liberality or generosity, not in return or requital for something else). ROM 3:24. 5. It bestows a gift (something, the possession of which is transferred to another without the expectation or receipt of an equivalent; a donation, present). ROM 5:15; 6:23. 6. It is not a reward of debt that God is obliged to give to a sinner for good work. ROM 4:4. 7. It excludes all boasting about justification. EPH 2:8-9; ROM 4:1-2. 8. It is the salvation of the LORD (JON 2:9): His election, work and mercy for which He alone gets the glory, glory of which He is rightly jealous. 1CO 1:28-30 c/w ISA 42:1-8. 9. This is why believers shall stand before God in His presence one day, and it is how they stand in their walk of faith before Him now. When this doctrine is perverted by the introduction of the sinner’s work, will, resolve, etc. to oblige God, the Grace 6-18-23 Page 3 standing gives way to falling and bondage. GAL 2:4; 5:1-4; HEB 12:15. B. Obviously, the primary error about the true grace of God in the eternal salvation of sinners is the addition of the sinner’s works. ROM 11:6. 1. Sinners’ evil works obviously cannot help but true grace even disallows good works in election unto eternal life. ROM 9:11. 2. This even disallows the sinner’s faith as the means to this grace since that is something the sinner does (MAT 23:23) which is, by definition, work (something that is or was done; what a person does or did). a. Sinners believe through this grace which makes one righteous. ACT 18:27. b. Sinners obtain faith through the righteousness of God. 2PE 1:1. c. Sinners’ faith is counted for righteousness: a token or evidence of the grace of God reigning through righteousness within them. ROM 4:3-5. 3. Once the sinner’s performance is deemed to be the determining factor to the true grace which gives eternal life, it may be logically concluded that the thus-rewarded sinner can also lose it by disobedience. This is the “flip side” of false grace which only reigns through righteousness for a season according to the sinner’s performance, not unto eternal life by Christ’s performance. ct/w ROM 5:19-21. 4. The addition of the sinner’s work to effectuate God’s work of grace constitutes a departure from the gospel of grace unto another gospel. GAL 1:6-7. a. Such a reversion to works-justification is a vain attempt to rely on dead works which were never able to eternally redeem the sinner but did burden the conscience. HEB 9:12-14. b. The gospel is good news: the publishing of what God freely did for sinners by Jesus Christ according to His own purpose and grace which preceded them (2TI 1:9). Adding sinners’ works to true grace is fake news. C. Another error concerning grace that must be avoided is that sin is a means to greater magnify God’s grace in salvation. ROM 6:1-2. 1. A logical end of this error is to exploit the perceived liberty of grace to justify lasciviousness and the breaking down of godly distinctions. JUDE 1:4 c/w REV 2:20. 2. Because Paul had preached free grace, he was falsely accused of advancing this error. ROM 3:8. 3. To this day, many hold that the teaching of true grace is a dangerous doctrine which opens the door for sin and lust. But true grace teaches the death of sin and lust in the believer, not the growth of them. TIT 2:11-14 c/w EPH 2:10; 1PE 4:1-3. 4. Those who hold that the grace of God to save sinners by Christ depends upon the sinner consider the doctrine of true, free grace to be a frustration of the plan of salvation. But adding the sinner’s performance to grace IS the frustration of grace! GAL 2:21. VII. Recap. A. Grace is unmerited favor to which the receiver has no right or claim: he did not deserve it nor did he earn it by obliging God to give it. It accords with mercy which is similarly the decision of God upon which the sinner has no claim. 1. It is free, a gift, a reward of justification not reckoned by debt of labor. ROM 4:4-5. 2. It includes a miraculous change of nature by God, making one spiritually alive who was by nature spiritually dead through an invisible operation of the Spirit. Grace 6-18-23 Page 4 EPH 2:1-5; JOH 3:8; 6:63. 3. It yields eternal life. TIT 3:3-5. 4. It is the common eternal salvation of Jews and Gentiles. ACT 15:11; JUDE 1:3. B. Proof that one is the object of this grace is in his faith and good works of submission to the gospel of Jesus Christ. By such the grace of God can be seen. ACT 11:20-23. C. There is additional grace available only to the actively believing child of God who is the object of the grace of God in eternal salvation. ROM 5:1-2; HEB 4:16; 2PE 1:2. D. All of this is owing to the fulness of Jesus Christ. JOH 1:14-16. VIII. We ought to be good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 1PE 4:10. A. We should embrace God’s sovereign election of grace as the first and true grace which gives eternal life to unworthy sinners and not presume to boast that our evidence of salvation is the means of our eternal life. ROM 4:2-3. B. We should not receive the grace of God in vain but rather gratefully live in its liberating truth in a manner well-pleasing to the God Who loves us. 2CO 6:1; HEB 10:29. C. We should reckon that any benefit we have that flows from grace is nothing we deserved nor could earn. 2TI 1:9; 1CO 15:10 c/w ACT 9:15; 1TI 1:12-15. D. If we are the beneficiaries of any grace, we should be utilizing that to God’s glory. 1CO 10:30-31. IX. (ACT 20:32) And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified. Grace 6-18-23 Page 5

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