Grace and Mercy: Two gifts that set Christianity apart from any other religion

Grace Plus Nothing

By Jeff Harkin
Chapter 7: What is grace?

Home / Grace Plus Nothing / Chapter 7
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» Introduction
» Our righteousness can't do it
» Imprisoned for mercy
» What is grace?
» Working Definitions for
   Justification and Sanctification

» Sanctification Does Not Cause

About This Section

The articles posted in this section are sample chapters from the book, Grace Plus NothingOff-site Link by Jeff Harkin.

Also available in Kindle Edition © Copyright 2004 Applied Grace Publications. Used by permission.

What is grace?

Most Christians say grace before meals. I must regretfully admit that for many years about all grace meant to me was prayers before meals.

Hopefully, having read even the first few pages of Grace plus NothingOff-site Link, grace already means a lot more to you than that.

The grace of God is essentially the gift of righteousness (right standing before God) and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Not only are these gifts, but they are also unmerited gifts. We will speak much more concerning the gift of the Holy Spirit later, but for now we must understand that Paul tied grace to the gift of righteousness.

Those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ (Romans 5:17Off-site Link .)

This understanding is foundational to Christianity. Further more grace alone has the power to free you from sin:

For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law, but under grace (Romans 6:14Off-site Link ).

Remember that the Lord imprisoned the entire world under the penalty and power of sin in order to induce all of us to receive his mercy (see Romans 11:32Off-site Link). Therefore the only way you will ever get free from sin is t get under grace and stay there. Paul said sin shall not be master over you because you are not under law but under grace. It makes sense, then, that the opposite is also true: To put a Christian under legalism is to bind him under sin! Remember that legalism has the power to actually arouse sinful passions.

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