Five Eternal Gifts from God - Grace 4
We must understand that God’s grace is “is love freely shown towards guilty sinners” contrary to their merit and indeed in defiance of their demerit. Grace is God showing goodness to persons who deserve only severity and had no reason to expect anything but severity.
It is surely clear that, once the Holy Spirit convinces an individual of his/her status and need are as described; the gospel of grace cannot but sweep this person off their feet with wonder and joy. God’s grace tells how our Judge has become our Savior; when if it were not for His grace, the Savior would have continued to be our Judge.
Do you doubt what God’s grace presupposes? We could examine Genesis 3 and God’s graciousness to Adam and Eve. Perhaps we could witness God’s grace towards Abraham (Genesis 12; 15; 17). Or what about the grace of God to the prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 6)?
Today, we need look no further than Ephesians 2:1-7 to see not only what sinners are/were without God’s Grace but also what they become because of God’s grace.
To begin with, what are/were we (sinners) without God’s Grace (Ephesians 2:1-3)?
The text begins by telling us that we are/were dead. “And you were dead in trespasses and sin.” (Ephesians 2:1, ESV). You once existed, or currently exist, in a condition of death. The Greek word is νεκροὺς (nekrous). It can mean to be physically dead, void of physical life. No breathing, thinking, feeling or choosing. The spirit or soul has left the body.
It can also mean to be spiritually dead. This refers to an existence which is destitute of a life devoted to God. It is to be continually dead, separated from God. This is evidence by one’s life style and living. Also by one’s attitudes.
Finally, it may refer to eternal death: Hell. This describes the former condition of the sinner God has saved or the present condition of the sinner God has yet to save.
Why is the sinner in this dreadful state? It is due to their trespasses and sins. The word trespasses refers to a law breaker. It is an individual who continues to take false steps. Sins means one who misses the mark of God’s perfect holiness.
The Bible says, “The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.” (Ezekiel 18:20, ESV)