Dispelling the Myths Associated With Grace – Part 1
By faith in Christ we gain a covenant relationship w/Him that must be maintained thru faithful obedience to all of His laws and His church in order to be saved.
MYTH #1. Grace means we or God are withholding judgment/justice.
1.1. Examples of this understanding of grace in the teaching of well known evangelicals:
“Justice is getting what you deserve…grace is getting what you don’t deserve.” – Stuart Briscoe
“We live in a world of earning, deserving, and merit, and these result in judgment. That is why everyone wants and needs grace. Judgment kills. Only grace makes alive.” – Justin Holcomb
“Anytime God withholds justice He is giving grace” – R.C. Sproul
“Grace short circuits God’s wrath [or judgment]…so that only the light of his love remains for believers.” – A.W. Tozer
1.2. The primary source of the Evangelical’s understanding of grace? Martin Luther.
“The Law [or justice] works wrath in its accusing and judging role… [whereas] the gospel [or] grace forgives…[and] makes alive.”
1.3. Why this erroneous view of grace creates an obstacle for the Evangelical to viewing the message of Christ•Covenant•Church as the biblical/saving gospel =
B/C it teaches that Christ can (and does) unconditionally pardon people of their sins. IOW: That faithfulness is not a condition of salvation but rather, Christ can (and does) forego the justice/judgement that should be served against the unfaithful and instead sends (or “graces”) them to heaven (provided they have faith) (texts misinterpreted to support this thinking would include 2Ti 2:13).
1.4. The consequences of this erroneous view of grace as unconditional pardon/withholding of justice (or) How we know its unbiblical (1Th 5:21; Act 17:11):
1.4.1. It establishes the toleration of evil versus the pursuit of justice as the key to human flourishing (Isa 26:9 10; Isa 5:15 20; Deu 16:20, 19:21; Ecc 8:11; Amo 5:14 15)
1.4.2. It makes both grace and justice arbitrary and partial (When do we show one and when the other? How do we show one and not become guilty of partiality in relation to those we do not show the same to?)
1.4.3. It infers that God had to compromise His throne, witness and gospel in order to fill heaven Psa 89:14, 97:2; Exo 23:7; Pro 11:21; Gal 6:7 10; Jer 46:28; Psa 98:9, Psa 99:1 9; Isa
1.4.4. It teaches that a person’s deeds will not ultimately determine their eternal destiny at the final judgment (Rev 20:11 15; Rom 2:6 11; 2Co 5:9 10; Jer 32:19)
1.4.5. It promotes the most sinister and popular false gospel identified in the New Testament (Jud 1:4).
1.4.6. It creates an obstacle for the rest of the world in viewing the Christian religion as the truth (How can a religion so capricious and ultimately unjust be the answer? One of the biggest reasons people reject Christianity is b/c the evangelical version of heaven means spending eternity in a place filled w/unjust people the same people who made their lives a living hell while on earth!) (1Jo 3:10).
CLOSING CHALLENGE/CONTEMPLATION = Do you really want to serve a God or live in a world where there is the withholding of justice?