Free Grace 25

Nothing in man doth precede or prevent the grace of God. The light and beams of grace do dispel the clouds of our sins. Not for our sakes, but for his Name’s sake he covereth our sins. It is God’s prerogative to free us from sin by grace, and to remove them far from us. “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” {Ps.103:12} He only can remove sin against whom it is committed. He only can cast sin into the depths of the sea, who hath an ocean of grace in himself, in which he swalloweth them up. John Simpson {Perfection of Justification, 1648}

Luke 23:32 Two others also, who were criminals, were being led away to be put to death with Him. 33 When they came to the place called The Skull, there they crucified Him and the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left…38 Now there was also an inscription above Him, “THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.” 39 One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” 40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 “And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

In the last posting (Free Grace 34) I tried to point out that there is nothing but free-grace that could save this man as there was utterly nothing else that could be argued as to why this man was converted. But of course there is one thing that can be argued, though I don’t think that it is a real argument at all. Some would argue that the man simply made a choice of his own free-will and so God saved the man because he had faith. Perhaps one could even say that the vast majority of people who say they believe the Bible and the Gospel in our day would make that argument. I can only say that it is a terrible argument to make as it makes faith out to be a work and so the criminal is then said to have saved himself by one work, or at least contributed to his own salvation by that one work.

We can respond by simply asking those people where that faith came from (God’s gift or man’s work) and what is the biblical teaching on what is the purpose of faith. While this has been dealt with previously, it is good to look at it from a real life example and especially a biblical example. What would move God to save this man because the man came up with faith? What is it about faith that would make it of such a quality thing that it would move God to save the sinner who comes up with it? God demands perfection in salvation and as such there is no righteousness acceptable to Him but that of Christ. So can a man come up with a perfect faith and as a result of that one perfect act of faith God is moved to save the man? How can this be?

We must look at this and think through this issue. If there is a faith that can come from a human being that can come from the human being apart from grace, which clearly a will that is free is free of grace, then that human being is not saved by Christ alone and is not saved by grace alone. If a human being is partially saved or can do something to move God to save him that another does not do, then the doctrine of election is overthrown and man is sovereign. Of course the very concept of a will that is free also implies that the will is free of sin or free of depravity at that point to. If the will is not totally free of depravity at the point of faith, then how can the act of faith move God to save the sinner? If the will is free, then it is not only free of depravity and of grace but also of the regenerating power of God.

We must fight to our dying breaths the notion that sinners are saved in some way other than sheer and perfect free-grace. Sinners are saved and sanctified based on the glory of God in Christ and that alone. There are no other reasons than God for why sinners are saved and sanctified. If we are not saved and sanctified by free-grace, then we are saved and sanctified by grace plus something we do. As we look at the thief on the cross who was crucified for his crimes and yet saved by free-grace alone, we must know that this is the pattern and the only way anyone can be saved and sanctified. We will always look to Christ alone and grace alone or we will look to self in some way to move God on our behalf. God can only be moved by His own name and glory and the name of Christ. If He is moved by another, then He is no longer holy. We give up free-grace at a terrible price.

One Response to “Free Grace 25”

  1. Jim Says:

    Phil 1:29 For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,

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