I hate it when people use the term “cheap grace” when they are referring to the gift of salvation. Grace isn’t cheap–it is free!
People cheapen grace when they attempt to earn favor with God by moral behavior. Let me be clear, even after we become spirit-filled Christians, we are far from sinless. The law demands 100% perfection. The law condemns everyone who has ever lived with one exception–Jesus Christ.
This is why it is impossible for us to earn God’s favor by keeping His commandments. We cannot achieve sinless perfection while living in our sinful flesh. Only those broken of spiritual pride can appreciate what it means to be saved by grace.
Even though God has promised to bless those who are obedient to His holy law, our best is simply not good enough to win eternal life.
“Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.” Romans 3: 19-20, NIV
God desires us to be obedient to Him in all things and He disciplines those that He loves, but He offers grace to those who admit their true spiritual condition. Those who are the closest to Christ will feel only shame when they stand in the presence of holy perfection. Our spiritual pride has to be nailed to the cross with Jesus before we can enjoy the peace of God’s promises.
The apostle Paul makes plain the proper relationship between faith and works, “Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. Because of what law? The law that requires works? No, because of the law that requires faith. For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law.” Romans 3: 27-28
Jesus spoke out against the spiritual pride of the religious leaders of His day when asked why He would associate with those of questionable morals: “Jesus said to them, ‘It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.'” Mark 2:17
The savior did not excuse sinful behavior, but He saw everyone on equal grounds when it came to divine law. This is why He commands us not to judge. Which one of us is without sin? In fact, acknowledging our problem is the first step in the healing process.
Jesus died to pay the penalty for our sins. His death paid for our salvation. The only condition for eternal life is to acknowledge our sinfulness and turn to Christ for forgiveness. We have nothing to offer but our filthy rags of imperfection. We have nothing with which to repay. Jesus offers us the free gift of his righteousness. Grace is free, but it cost the life of the Son of God.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” Ephesians 2:8
One drop of the blood of Christ is worth more than every human being who has ever lived. He spilled it all for you!