BY GRACE ALONE (PART 35)
Contrary to lost man’s thinking, salvation by grace alone in no way promotes an irresponsible lifestyle, for true grace brings with it the works and the will to perform them which have been appointed/ordained by God for the new creature in Christ to walk in (see Eph. 2:10). Those who falsely accuse the believers in salvation by grace alone of a reckless and irresponsible complacency, fail to acknowledge the fact that grace makes a man active in the war against sin, and leads him to an obedient life filled with praise and worship of the Holy God. It is the deniers of grace alone who are the complacent ones, satisfied with their own works as reason for their salvation. Grace produces thankfulness in the heart of the saved man, and a life of good works and devotion to the God Who has so graciously saved him. “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” (Rom. 6:1,2 cf. Jd. 4). “…grace in conversion is glorified by putting a stop to the reign of sin, and not by increasing its power, which would be done by continuing in it; grace teaches men not to live in sin, but to abstain from it; add to this, that it is owing to the want (absence) of grace, and not to the aboundings of it, that men at any time abuse, or make an ill use of the doctrines of grace; wherefore the apostle's answer is. There is a death for sin, a death in sin, and a death to sin; the latter is here mentioned, and persons may be said to be ‘dead to sin’, both as justified and sanctified: justified persons are dead to sin, inasmuch as that it is not imputed to them to condemnation and death; they are discharged from it; it cannot hurt them, or exert its damning power over them; it is crucified, abolished, and made an end of by Christ: sanctified persons are dead to sin; sin is not made their business, it is not their course of life; it is no longer a pleasure to them, but is loathsome and abominable; it is looked upon, not as a friend, but an enemy; it does not reign, it has not the dominion over them; it is subdued in them, and its power weakened; and as to the members of the flesh, and deeds of the body, it is mortified: to live in sin, is to live after the dictates of corrupt nature; and persons may be said to live in it, when they give up themselves to it, are bent upon it; when sin is their life, they delight in it, make it their work and business, and the whole course of their life is sinful: now those who are dead to sin, cannot thus live in it, though sin may live in them; they may fall into sin, and lie in it some time, yet they cannot live in it: living in sin, is not only unbecoming the grace of God revealed in the Gospel, but is contrary to it; it is detestable to gracious minds, yea, it seems impossible they should live in it; which is suggested by this question, ‘how shall we?’ The thing is impracticable: for, for a gracious soul to live in sin, would be to die again, to become dead in sin, which cannot be; he that lives and believes in Christ shall never die, spiritually or eternally.” The man saved by grace loves God and lives for Him a life of love and obedience because he has been loved and saved by grace. He graciously loves and forgives others as he is so graciously loved and forgiven by God. The man saved by grace lives a life contrary to sin. He does not see grace as a way to continue sinning, but as a means to stop living a life of sin. He will have his battles with sin, however, the overwhelming trend in his life will be to submit himself to God, do good, rejoice in victories over sin and temptation, and always seek to resist and eschew all evil.
Grace does not give a man what he deserves, for grace is a gift that can never be given under such circumstances. Grace is an eternal gift, and it is a gift eternally, therefore, it can never ever be a reward, or something earned. There is nothing in the universe which can earn the grace of God. Grace comes because you cannot do, and have not done anything by which you have earned salvation. Works cannot do what grace does: bring salvation, make alive, create a new creature in Christ. Grace does not come because of works done, but because of the absence of anything done which is deserving of a reward from God. Grace is given because of God’s love, not because of a man’s love for God. As election and salvation are by grace alone, the apostle Paul stated that they cannot be by works, therefore, salvation/election can never be a reward for any condition allegedly met by man. If salvation is by grace then it can only be by grace alone: “…if by grace then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (Rom. 11:6). Replace the word grace with gift, and the word works with reward in this Bible verse, and the picture becomes even clearer: ‘If by a gift then is it no more a reward: otherwise the gift is no more a gift. But if it be a reward, then is it no more a gift: otherwise the reward is no more a reward’. Therefore, grace never comes after anything else is done first. Replace the words grace and works in Romans 11:6 with the words undeserved and deserved, and we see the same clear picture: ‘…if by that which is undeserved then is it no more of that which is deserved: otherwise that which is undeserved is no more undeserved. But if it be by that which is deserved, then is it no more by that which is undeserved: otherwise that which is deserved is no longer that which is deserved’ (see Rom. 11:6). Grace does not come after works, but because no works can be done. If works could save there would be no need for grace. Grace and the salvation it brings is not conditional. Mercy is based on what Christ has done, not on what the individual does. Saving Grace is something that can only be given, therefore, never presented, or offered, as some prize, or reward for something done. Grace is not some act which calls for a reciprocal action by those to whom it is ‘offered’, for it is the only act by which salvation can be, and is, given. Salvation does not come after the mutual action of grace and works, but by the single action of grace. Salvation does not come after what a man has done, otherwise, it would no longer be by grace. If salvation awaits what a man does before it can save, then salvation would be by works. ‘Salvation by grace through works’, or ‘salvation by grace and works’, is just a drawn out way of saying ‘salvation by works’, for such statements ultimately condition salvation upon what the individual has to do. False gospels teach that if the individual does not do, then grace alone cannot save. In other words, God’s grace needs your works to secure salvation. Such gospels are inherently satanic in nature. The false gospels taught by lost people, and accepted by equally lost people teach that grace alone cannot save. Their saviour is themselves, not God; their means to salvation is works, not grace alone. The fact that a man is saved purely and freely by grace, is God declaring that a man is saved purely and wholly by what God does. Salvation is a gift from God Who graciously saves those whom He is willing to save only according to His grace and mercy. These powerful Scripture-based statements reveal the fact that salvation is not only not by works, but that it can neither be by a combination of works and grace. Not by works working with grace or grace working through works. Salvation cannot simultaneously be earned and given, therefore it is either something given OR earned. Salvation is by grace not yourselves. Salvation is by grace not works. Salvation is by grace, not by anything you can boast about. Salvation is by grace. Nothing needs be added to it, in order to make it functional, for grace is triggered and acts solely on and by the will of God. Salvation is by grace, therefore, it can only be by what God alone has willed, and what God alone has done. It is only the will of God that makes His grace effective. Nothing else can make grace save, nothing can help grace save.
Mercy is given so that a man will never receive his just deserts. The mercy of God is based on the sacrificial and atoning act of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ. God is merciful to His people, for His Son has taken the punishment they deserved. Man is a sinner and his actions— including everything he does which he believes is helping him to establish a righteousness of his own—are only deserving of merciless punishment. God has declared that the foundation of salvation is the Righteousness of His dear Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, for there is no other righteousness that can save. God has also declared through the apostle Paul that those who seek salvation based upon what they do, are ignorant, or are neglecting the fact that only God’s Righteousness saves. There is only ONE way to Heaven: GOD’S Way, GOD’S Righteousness. “…by grace are ye saved…” shows that there is nothing a man can do to get saved. Grace leads to the Divine Righteousness of Christ and salvation, works lead to an unacceptable sinful human righteousness and Hell. If there was something a man could do to get saved, grace would not be necessary, salvation would not be by grace at all, but by works, and so Christ’s Righteousness would not be required. You cannot earn God’s Righteousness, it can only be given to you by that which is equally undeserved: grace. If righteousness comes by a man’s obedience to the law then Christ died in vain (see Gal. 2:21). If salvation comes by what you do, then Christ simply wasted His time thinking that the Righteousness He would establish for all His people would be the only Righteousness that could save. If Righteousness comes by the personal obedience of an individual, then mercy would not be required, for man could do to get saved rather than require a Saviour to do something for him. If any act of man’s preceded salvation then grace and mercy would not be necessary. Salvation could not be by an act of God by grace if it was conditioned on what a man had to perform. This shows how grace cancels out the need for works, and how works cancel out any need for grace. Grace and works are opposing forces, not allies. There is no congruity between grace and works. “There is no congruity between grace and those (carnal) principles which are in us before its production. The mention which some make of a Divine influence in regeneration means no more than stirring up natural principles unto holy acts; which is far from truth, and is absurd, for enmity cannot be made to love; that involves a contradiction.” The only works which grace does work with, that it is not a natural enemy of, are the works which itself produces in the saved sinner after he is saved. Grace shows that works simply will not do, and subsequently that salvation is not by what a man does, but is only based on what God does. It is God’s grace and Christ’s Righteousness that save a man eternally, and not a man’s works or righteousness at all. Grace shows that salvation is conditioned on God, and works reveal the lie that salvation is conditioned on man. Those who obstinately insist that a man must play his part, that his obedience is a factor in his getting saved and remaining saved, either fail to see or accept the fact that salvation is by the obedience of Jesus Christ alone for all His people, and is not at all dependent on their feeble attempts at obeying Him. The fact salvation is by grace shows that it could never be by a man’s works. No one could ever do anything to deserve salvation, therefore, if anyone is to be saved salvation can only be by the means of that which is totally undeserved. The irony of lost people trying to gain salvation, is that the One they claim they are trying to be obedient to, is the only One Whose Righteousness salvation is dependent on. You cannot join God’s grace with a man’s works, for grace and works will not/cannot mix. By grace, not works, is a man saved. Only by God is a man saved.
Many say, ‘But man needs grace in order for him to do that which will gain him salvation’. Do people seriously think that “by grace ye are saved” means that a man is saved by God enabling him, equipping him, to do that which must be done before grace can actually save him? Do people really think that a man needs to perform certain works to qualify himself for Heaven when the Word of God states that it is God by grace Who qualifies His people, “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son: In Whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:12-14). Hath made us meet simply means ‘has qualified us’. God has predestinated His people “…unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, To the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the Beloved. In Whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Eph. 1:5-7). Anyone who still thinks that it is their works which qualifies them for Heaven rather than grace alone, is still dead in their sins, and dead to the Word of God. They do not hear His Voice, only their own. They are not led by the Spirit of truth, but the spirit of error. Is salvation by that which is undeserved only possible after a man has done something to deserve it? If this is true then grace would be an intermediary, merely a support act to the main attraction which would be a man doing. If people would only concentrate their attention on the word grace and discover its true and only meaning in salvation, they would quickly do away with any paradoxical notion that grace merely equips a man to do what he ‘must do’ before he can be saved. Grace does not lead to works which in turn lead to salvation, for by grace alone is a man saved. The only works grace leads to are ones which it produces and are performed only after salvation because of salvation (see Eph. 2:10). How can grace lead to works when the Word of God says: “And if by grace, then is it NO MORE of works…” (Rom. 11:6). The fact that salvation is by grace puts an end to any silly notion that it is by works, or also by works, or cannot do without works. Grace cancels out the need for any works in the salvation of a man, so how can it be said to lead to the performance of any necessary works before a man can be saved?
It literally shocks this author to see the very real hatred men have by nature toward salvation by grace alone. How vehemently lost men insist that their works play an essential part in what they believe is their salvation. Quote any Scripture you like to them, and their impenetrable carnal minds, and their ears which they have stopped, simply will not understand and comprehend the Word of God. They have no spiritual discernment, only a sad carnal, twisted understanding of the truth. What must be understood is the fact that grace in salvation reveals the Sovereignty of God, His choice of man, His saving a man, etc. Grace reveals what God has done, not what He has allegedly enabled a man to do. Grace points to God only, not God and man. Scriptures such as Romans 11:6 make this transparently clear. The lost have never changed. They have and always will look to their own personal obedience to the law of God and the traditions of men for their salvation. Their arguments always remain the same evidencing the tragic evil and deceptive hearts all men own by nature. They never get beyond that level, for they are children of Wrath, the cursed goats who will be separated from the sheep, and told to depart into everlasting fire (see Matt. 25:41). They will always hope in their own individual level of righteousness to admit them into Heaven, rather than having faith in the only Righteousness that is admissible: the Righteousness of Jesus Christ. “But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:23-26). The Christian is justified “…by Christ the object of faith, by His Righteousness, which faith looks unto and receives, and not by the law and the works of it…there is no such thing as justification by the law; for how could ever such a blessing be expected from it, when men were kept under it as under a military guard; when they were shut up in it as in a prison, and were treated by it as malefactors, convicted and condemned; and when they were under the discipline of it, as a rigid and severe schoolmaster? this being their case till Christ came, when it ceased to be all this to them, He being the end of it for Righteousness, it became a thing self-evident, that justification is only by Him and His Righteousness, and so the end here mentioned was answered.” The works of a man take Sovereignty away from God, it turns the spotlight onto man, and away from God. The works of a man cancel out grace and makes God one who merely waits and hopes that someone will choose Him. Works diminish God’s role in salvation from the Sovereign King of kings Who has mercy and grace upon whomsoever He wills, to one who can only feebly wait and hope that some will choose and accept Him.
The insipid, repugnant, so-called god of Arminianism is one who has sent out ‘friend requests’ to everyone, and now waits and hopes that some might accept his pathetic plea. God does not take second place to anyone, nor does grace only play a part in a man’s salvation. God does not sit and hope salvation will happen, GOD MAKES SALVATION HAPPEN! This is what grace does. Grace IS the plan! God’s grace IS the means to a man’s salvation. Salvation is not by grace through works, but by grace through faith. The gift of grace brings the gift of faith, it does not lead to works by which a man can then be saved. A man is saved only by grace. Works have never saved anyone. How can anything a man does save him when Scripture declares a man at his best is nothing but a profitless creature! “…verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity” (Psa. 39:5 cf. Psa. 62:9). That which saves is what God does, for He is the Saviour. GRACE, the free and undeserved favour of God, is what saves a man. Salvation is not based on what a man does, but solely on what God does: Grace. Salvation can only be given, not gotten. Salvation is not what a man has achieved and been rewarded with, it is a GIFT. God does not sit around wondering, hoping, waiting for someone to come and get it, for salvation can only be given by Him to those whom He has chosen and entrusted to His Son. Salvation is subservient to the will of God, not the will of man. Grace is God’s pronouncement that there is nothing a man can do to get saved. Grace is God’s declaration that spiritually dead men can only be saved by what God does. Grace is God’s statement that only He can save, and that He does so only according to His grace, and not after any act of obedience by a man. Any argument against salvation by grace alone is, invariably, a declaration that man is not dead in trespasses and sins, and needs not anything so drastic as to be made alive, but merely a few obedient works from a sincere heart in order to be saved. The curse of sin is that a man is not only dead in sins, but dead to the truth of God even when he sees it with his own two eyes. The only truths that register in the mind of the lost, are those twisted truths which are used to bolster their faith in the lies of the Devil. “…there is no light in them” (Isa. 8:20 cf. 1 Tim. 6:3-5).
Religion tells us that God comes along, and by grace gives us the power to do what we cannot do on our own, so that we can then be saved. And yet still, even with the grace of God present, they say, a man can resist and reject God. They say grace requires a man’s consent because God allegedly does not force Himself on anyone against their will. This perversion of grace, and complete mischaracterization of Who God is and what God is like, does not guarantee the salvation of any, it only makes it ‘possible’ by conditioning salvation on what a man does, not on what God does. As if what a man does is a surer way to Heaven than what God does. Earning salvation makes a man sovereign, being given salvation by grace shows God is Sovereign over all. The problem with fake grace is that it strips God of any Sovereignty, of any leadership, of His role as the gracious giver of salvation to whomsoever He has chosen, and bases the entirety of salvation upon a man’s will. In such a scenario, God’s will is subordinate to a man’s will before God can save him. This abhorrent teaching cancels out the very attribute that makes God Who He is: The Sovereign God Who does whatsoever He pleases! “But our God is in the heavens: He hath done whatsoever He hath pleased” (Psa. 115:3); God saves whom He wants to save because no one can do anything to get saved! “Whatsoever the Lord pleased, that did He in Heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places” (Psa. 135:6). THERE IS NO WILL THAT CAN RESIST THE WILL OF ALMIGHTY GOD! Again, what such devious and deadly teaching, which talks of God as one Who can be resisted, whose plans can be foiled by a mere man’s will, avoids altogether is the fact that all mankind is dead in sins, without God and without hope in the world. ‘Man can do nothing’, they say, ‘but with grace, his choice for God is made possible’. ‘A window of opportunity is opened to a man when he is visited by grace’, they say. The Word of God says: “But He is in one mind, and who can turn Him? and what His soul desireth, even that He doeth. For He performeth the thing that is appointed for me…” (Job 23:13,14). God’s interest, His will, is not merely in the means, but in the end. God does not leave to the will of any creature that which His soul desires. “The conversion of men is according to the appointment of God; they that are called are called according to His purpose; the time of conversion, the place where, and means whereby, are all fixed in the decrees and purposes of God, and have their sure and certain accomplishment…”
“…the God of Scripture is no make-believe monarch, no mere imaginary sovereign; but King of kings, and Lord of lords! (see 1 Tim. 6:15; Rev. 1:5; 17:14; 19:11-16; Deut. 10:17; Psa. 136:3). To countless thousands, even among those professing to be Christians, the God of the Scriptures is quite unknown. The god of this twenty-first century no more resembles the Supreme Sovereign of Holy Writ, than does the dim flickering of a candle, the glory of the midday sun! The god who is now talked about in the average pulpit, spoken of in the ordinary Sunday school, mentioned in much of the religious literature of the day, and preached in most of the so-called Bible conferences, is the figment of human imagination, an invention of mushy sentimentality! The heathen outside of the pale of Christendom form ‘gods’ out of wood and stone; while the millions of heathen inside Christendom manufacture a god out of their own carnal mind! In reality, they are but atheists, for there is no other possible alternative between an absolutely Supreme God, and no God at all. A god whose will is resisted, whose designs are frustrated, whose purpose is checkmated, possesses no title to Deity; and so far from being a fit object of worship, merits nothing but contempt!” “And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto Heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured Him that liveth for ever, Whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His Kingdom is from generation to generation: And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and HE DOETH ACCORDING TO HIS WILL in the army of Heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay His hand, or say unto Him, What doest Thou?” (Dan. 4:34,35). “God is unlike us in that He does just as He pleases. And, because He does as He pleases, His purposes are never thwarted.” “The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand…For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and His hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” (Isa. 14:24,27). “Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which He hath made crooked?” (Eccl. 7:13 cf. Job 12:14; Eccl. 6:10). “…if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it…” (Acts 5:39). “…Allelulia: for the Lord God Omnipotent Reigneth” (Rev. 19:6). This is the true God. The ‘God’ who is promulgated by pseudo-Christianity is no God at all, for his will is subject to man’s will. He is a god that can and is defeated daily in that he cannot do as he pleases, that which he thinks does not always come to pass and whose purposes are easily thwarted. This incompetent god chooses no one to be saved, but shows his impotence as he sits, waits and hopes like a beggar on the streets that someone will choose him.
True grace, which comes because of the will of God, makes salvation happen. True salvation comes by God choosing. You cannot take it, you cannot earn it, you cannot get it, you cannot seek it, you cannot choose it, you cannot even desire true salvation God’s Way. Man is dead to true salvation, for he is dead to the only true God. Man is dead to the only means to salvation and the only One Who gives it. God saves whomsoever He wills by His grace and mercy. God’s Gospel is about God and what He has done. Sin has taken any hope of salvation, any hope of man getting back with God away from man forever. Salvation is out of man’s reach. No matter who a man is, no matter what a man does salvation remains an impossible dream. Sin has done nothing but steal, kill and destroy, leaving man a hopeless, Godless wreck. There is absolutely nothing man can do to rectify his situation, which is why the Lord Jesus states: “NO MAN CAN COME TO ME…” (Jn. 6:44). “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one” (Rom. 3:10-12). Now tell me, in light of these Holy truths, what can a man do to get saved? To begin with man has no understanding so how can he find the solution. How can a man become Righteous who is not Righteous? How can a man seek God when he does not know God? How can man who is unprofitable profit by anything he does? How can a man be good who is not good? What can a man summon up from within him that can obligate God to save him? Only the grace and mercy of God saves a man, only grace connects a man back with the only true God. Grace and mercy cancel out even the remotest possibility that salvation requires a man to perform some act of his own. Sin killed man spiritually, and only grace makes him alive again. What only man did brought death. What only God does brings life. Only that which is free of sin saves.
One cannot attach anything to grace, for the moment one does, grace ceases to be grace. In any equation, adding anything to the only correct answer will always leave you with empty error. Grace is free and undeserved. Now tell me what can you add to grace that will not do away with the fact it is unmerited? When a man is saved by grace, he is saved by that which is UNMERITED! Man is saved ONLY by that which he can do nothing to obtain. Man is saved ONLY by that which he can do nothing to deserve. Nothing can be done to deserve the undeserved. Salvation is only by that which no one can do anything to merit: grace. To say you did this, or you did that and then God saved you, is to decry grace as the only means to salvation. To say that you were saved after performing some act of obedience, is to disavow any connection to grace. Those who insist that their works are due to God’s grace, and by this combination a man is saved, fail to understand the most basic of all Scriptural principles which is “…by grace are ye saved…not of yourselves…not of works…” (Eph. 2:8,9). Works of any kind be they attributed to a man, or to the grace of God, DO NOT SAVE! If you believe God saved you after some work of your own, you are without grace, you have not God. To add anything to grace such as a work of man’s is to imply a condition for salvation that can only be met by a man doing. Fulfilling any condition for salvation with what a man does is to cancel out the fact that salvation is an unmeritable free gift. This is why if you believe that salvation comes after you have done something, which is to say, after you believe you have fully complied with some pre-existing condition, then what you have is a phony meritable salvation. The only thing those who believe they can work for their salvation will receive, the only thing they are deserving of, is a salvation that simply does not save. The only thing you can work for is that which will not save you. True salvation is not only unmerited it is completely unmeritable. True salvation is by grace alone. True salvation is a gift from God. You cannot do anything to get it, you cannot do anything to keep it, for it is totally by the grace of God.
There is nothing you can do that will merit salvation. The blasphemous concept of meriting salvation puts God under an obligation to save you. There is no resemblance between false salvation and the true salvation which comes by grace through faith not works. To condition salvation on anything you must do is to instantly eliminate any claim you think you have to say you have been saved by grace. If the grace you believe in ‘saves’ you only after you have done something, you have a false grace and are deceived. If the grace that saves comes only after you have performed some prerequisite act, then it can only come as that which is deserved. This also destroys the very nature of grace, for grace is undeserved: no one can do anything to oblige God to grant it. You have a false grace and are deceived. Grace comes from God according to His will, and He gives it to whomsoever HE wills according to His will and purpose not their works (see Ex. 33:19; Rom. 9:15,16). Believing that works of obedience are a condition for salvation and that one is saved by grace—in other words ‘by grace are ye saved through works’—is like trying to connect two magnets of the same polarity. All that will happen is the closer the magnet of works comes to the magnet of grace the further away grace will be pushed until it falls off the table. Grace and works can never work together, for they can never be joined, just like our magnets. Grace needs no assistance, it can accept no assistance and is in itself a refutation of assistance, for salvation can only come by that which is undeserved. The grace of the true God needs no assistance from man to save anyone. GRACE ALONE IS THE ANSWER, NOT MERELY PART OF THE SOLUTION. Grace is, and can only be, given, therefore, it can never be that which is deserved. The minute you add anything to grace you destroy grace. Those who believe they must do before receiving grace have no idea what the grace of God is. You cannot add a deserving act to grace for grace to save you. Grace saves only according to what God has done, not by what a man does. GRACE SAVES ACCORDING TO THE WILL OF GOD, NOT THE WORKS OF MAN! GRACE ONLY SAVES WHEN IT IS ALONE. Paul the apostle writing to Timothy, declared: “Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the Gospel according to the power of God; Who hath SAVED us, and called us with an holy calling, NOT ACCORDING TO OUR WORKS, but ACCORDING TO HIS OWN PURPOSE AND GRACE, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel” (2 Tim. 1:8-10 cf. Eph. 1:4; Titus 3:5). True Christians are saved according to the grace of God, not their works. Saved by grace through God-given faith NOT works. SALVATION BY GRACE ALONE IS A CELEBRATION OF THE ONLY TRUE GOD!
Grace is the means God uses to save His people from their sins. Salvation is not through the efforts of man. The worst problem man has is not that he denies grace by seeking salvation by his works of obedience, but that he is obeying a false god. Most people who call themselves Christian, are following a god who seeks their obedience before he can ‘save’ them. Once a man has been shown the Light of God and believes the Gospel of God, only then will he see the vanity of his religious endeavours. The presence of grace, the very need for grace highlights the fact that a man saved by grace is saved by grace ALONE, and that there is no work of man’s which can possibly play any part in that salvation work which only grace can do. If salvation were achievable by works then grace would not be necessary. However, if salvation is by grace—which it most assuredly is—then obviously, works will never do. Being “Assured of your salvation by the unique grace of our Lord Jesus Christ is the heartbeat of the Gospel, joyful liberation from fear of the Final Outcome, a summons to self-acceptance, and freedom for a life of compassion toward others.” Saving grace is unique. There is nothing like it in all the universe, for salvation can only come by it. Just as the Spirit and the flesh lust against each other (see Gal. 5:17), and are, therefore, contrary the one to the other, so too, grace and works are contrary the one to the other. Grace and works do not work together to produce a Christian, for a Christian—a new creature created in Christ Jesus—exists solely because of the workmanship of God by grace alone. Nothing is required of man, “For by grace are ye saved”. My son once told me, “It can’t be that easy”. That was the moment I knew the penny had dropped, the moment I knew he was given eyes to see the true Gospel and God’s only means to salvation. Salvation is not a cooperative effort of God’s and man’s, for there is nothing that can bind God’s grace and man’s works together. The whole of religion says man must do, the whole of what claims to be Christianity says man must do, while the Word of God says grace does it all because man can do nothing. This entire lie that man must do is not some new teaching, for it began in the Garden of Eden, and was espoused by Satan the old Serpent, who is the father of nothing but lies. Satan denied the fact that if Eve and her husband did not eat the fruit they would continue to enjoy God’s eternal blessings and have eternal life. The only way, Satan said, they could be as gods would be if they did eat the fruit, etc. So trusting in God was not the way, Satan said. The way to eternal godhood and life was to do! This heresy “…was conceived by Satan in the Garden of Eden. The first seed was planted when Adam bought the idea that God was NOT truly Sovereign and that through the activation of ‘free will’ man could be made perfect and enter Heaven to be like God”.
Today, the lie of ‘free will’ is still presented to the ignorant as the key to eternal life. The lie of the Devil is that salvation is not by grace alone, not by what only God does, but that a man can and must do to reach eternal life. What Satan was advocating, and what is still advocated today, is works as the means to salvation. That salvation is not a gift from God, but something a man can take to himself by doing. In other words, it’s not by God’s grace, but your works. Man must do! ‘Eve, you must do’, is what Satan was saying. Not being able to do anything, but trusting solely in the God of grace is not the way to salvation, says false Christianity. A man must do, therefore, it all depends on you. “It all started with a perceived ‘choice’. Adam and Eve believed they could be ‘like’ the Most High, merely by making the right choice, and that the movement from manhood to godhood involved the activation of their own will (the eating of the fruit). The earliest concept of ‘cooperative’ redemption was begun in the Garden of Eden. It is from this ‘seed’ (the rebellion against God’s Sovereign Grace and decrees, and the concept that humans can be ‘co-redemptors’ with God) that we can trace the false gospel that would flourish and thrive into the last days. Cain slew his brother Abel, and we can only surmise that SACRIFICE was at the root of the dispute. Jesus taught that all murder is rooted in anger and covetousness. Abel had offered a sacrifice to God that was pleasing to Him. God had declared that without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sins. Abel’s sacrifice was acceptable to God, because it involved BLOOD, not human endeavour. Cain’s sacrifice was rejected by God. His sacrifice involved the work of his hands and the sweat of his brow. He worked to please God, and God reviled his gift. It is apparent that Cain was incensed that God had no regard for his works. The mark of Cain’s rebellion can be traced throughout human history, through Cain’s SPIRITUAL seed.” The same spirit of murder has ever since comfortably resided in the hearts of those who call themselves Christian, who hate the doctrine that God saves only by what He does, while insisting that what they do plays an integral, indispensable role in their ‘salvation’.
Satan’s promise of eternal godhood was all based on man doing, and man doing (eating the fruit) was precisely what God said NOT TO DO, for it would bring nothing but DEATH!! THIS is the enmity that lies in the desperately wicked heart of mankind by nature. THIS is the anti-Christ spirit behind all religion, including every version that calls itself Christian. Cooperative redemption is what it is called, today it is known as Arminianism, or semi-Pelagianism. It is the false teaching that insists no man can be saved by grace alone through faith alone. That no man is saved who rests in the work of God, but must busy himself with his own works if he would see Heaven. “Psalm 44:3: ‘…neither did their own arm save them: but Thy right hand, and Thine arm, and the light of Thy countenance, because Thou hadst a favour, unto them’. The arm of the Lord is symbolic of the Messiah, His activity on earth. 'Because thou hadst a favour unto them' Free grace was the fundamental cause of all their felicity. God loved them because He loved them, (see Deut. 7:7,8), God chooses because He loves. He chose them of His love, and then loved them for His choice.” Personal merit is not the cause nor that which sustains God’s love for His people. It is God’s will and purpose manifested in and by His grace through which He saves His people. The Roman Catholic Church is the universal promoter and sustainer of the lie that salvation is not by grace alone through faith alone, particularly its Jesuit arm. It hates grace, for it hates God! The Roman Catholic Church’s hatred of grace alone is so intense, that it pronounces a curse on anyone who believes that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone. The Council of Trent (Dec. 13, 1545-Dec. 14, 1563), Canon 9: "If any one saith, that by faith alone the impious is justified; in such wise as to mean, that nothing else is required to co-operate in order to the obtaining the grace of Justification, and that it is not in any way necessary, that he be prepared and disposed by the movement of his own will; let him be anathema." (see Rom. 3:20,24,28; 4:3; 5:1; Eph. 2:8; Titus 3:5). ‘Cooperate’ in order to receive that which cannot be merited? That which is unmeritable can only come by our cooperation? That which is unmeritable can only come after we have done something to merit it? ‘Cooperate’ by the movement of our own will, when all men are dead in sins and remain so right up until the moment they are made alive by grace? Woe unto those who intentionally deceive, who do the work of the Devil. Woe unto those who believe the Devil’s gospel of works, and deny God’s Gospel of Sovereign grace. It would indeed be better if such people had never been born. “In Islam, the Muslim attains forgiveness through Allah's favor and works: ‘To those who believe and do deeds of righteousness hath Allah promised forgiveness and a great reward’ (Surah 5:9). Only by good works outweighing bad works and by the will of Allah can a Muslim be forgiven his sins and gain access to his paradise. ‘Then those whose balance [of good deeds] is heavy, they will be successful. But those whose balance is light, will be those who have lost their souls; in hell will they abide’ (Qur’an 23:102-103).” This same principle of good works is at the heart of all man-made religion.
If a man is saved by grace alone there is no need for cooperation. Salvation, its means, cause and effect, is a GIFT. There are no conditions to be met before a gift can be given. The giving of a gift relies solely upon the gift-giver. If a man is saved by grace there is no need for works, for works implies reward for that which has been done. The presence of grace declares nothing could ever be done, therefore, nothing was ever done by any saved man which merited his salvation. SALVATION WAS, IS AND SHALL FOREVER BE BY GRACE ALONE. Salvation is by grace, and so, cannot be of works. The need to say the word ‘alone’ is for the purpose of making it absolutely clear to those who do not properly understand that grace is alone in its work of salvation. Salvation is by grace (see Eph. 2:8.9), therefore, it can only be by grace alone. “And if by grace, then is it no more of works…” (Rom. 11:6). I guess the Council of Trent forgot to mention this verse. People like to add works whenever “by grace are ye saved” is taught, but they fail to notice that the only mention of works by the apostle is when he said “NOT of works”! People say they agree salvation is by grace, but once a man is saved he must now obey the Commandments. The man saved by grace alone is the only man who truly obeys God, for he walks in the works God has ordained for him to walk in, and he does so not so he can remain saved by his own obedience, but as a show of appreciation and love toward the God Who has saved him by grace alone. The works a saved man is ordained to walk in is not for salvation, but because of salvation. Anyone who believes that their ‘salvation’ is maintained by what they do, do not know the grace of God, or the God of grace. Faith is because of grace, salvation is because of grace. EVERYTHING is because of GRACE! Ephesians 2 constantly and consistently reminds us that it is grace alone that saves. “But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)” (Eph. 2:4,5). The saved man was dead in sins and has been made alive by grace alone. Deservedly dead in sins, undeservedly made alive by grace. Nothing but sin brought death, nothing but grace brings life. Salvation, the whole of salvation, not just the inception of salvation, but the entirety of it is by grace alone! If it were not, then Paul was wrong when he revealed the error of those who believed they were saved by grace, but thought they would be made perfect by their works. “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3). “…whereas they began their Christian race depending upon the Spirit and grace of God, now they seemed to be taking a step as if they thought to finish it in the mere strength of nature; and whereas they set out with the clear Gospel of Christ, and sought for justification only by His Righteousness, they were now verging to the law, and seeking to make their justifying Righteousness perfect, by joining the works of the law unto it, which needed them not, but was perfect without them.”
What saves is not a man’s works, salvation is not of himself, it is not by what a man does, but only what God does by grace. Salvation is freely given by God, therefore, it can never, at any stage, be merited, or chosen, by man. Grace is not a response from God, but the Self-motivated gift of God. “We love Him, because He first loved us” (1 Jn. 4:19). Grace makes those who were dead in sins alive to Him, “You hath He quickened (made alive), who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Eph. 2:1); man was dead, and only grace makes him alive; man’s dilemma is that he is a child of God’s Wrath which is all even the elect of God were before God saved them, “Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of Wrath, even as others” (Eph. 2:3); the dead works of men trying to gain Heaven by what they do, are no less the desires of their flesh and of their carnal minds that are nothing but enmity against God. The only possible solution to this perilous condition is God, not man. Grace not works. “BUT GOD, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us (MADE US ALIVE) together with Christ, (BY GRACE ye are saved;)” Eph. 2:4,5). Saved, kept, preserved, reserved all by grace alone. A man is brought to Heaven by the free favour of God, not as a reward for works. A man who is dead has no hope, yet God’s chosen even when they were dead in their trespasses and sins are made alive by the only power that can make alive: the grace of God. You do not get to Heaven by making a free-will decision, you do not get to Heaven by anything you do, for it is only the grace of God that saves and the God-given gift of faith that believes it! The dead do not believe, for they have not been given the gift of faith through which grace saves. Those who believe they are Christians saved by grace through works do not have the faith God gifts to all His children which adores and worships Him and believes only in God and His grace as the means to salvation, and as the means that maintains their saved state eternally. Being dead in sins is precisely why man needs a Saviour, someone to save him, for he can do nothing to save himself.
God saves only by all that is within Him. God saves by His grace because He loves His elect. They are not saved because of their love, by their approaching Him, for “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 Jn. 4:10); God, “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)” (Eph. 2:5); “We love Him, because He first loved us” (1 Jn. 4:19). God, even when His people were dead in sins, when they could do nothing, when they did not know Him, or seek Him, or love Him MADE THEM ALIVE BY GRACE! They did not do anything to get saved, and they can do nothing to stay saved. Just as man cannot get saved by works of obedience, he cannot maintain his salvation by works of obedience. Salvation is by grace. Some may wonder why this author has repeated the statement, saved by grace, so often in this book. My friends you would not believe how many times people need to be reminded of what the Word of God says. They wander off into the wilderness of works, resorting to their abilities and natural belief that surely some works need to be performed to either get saved, or remain saved. The Word of God is always there, and it always says the exact same thing. Nothing can change the Word of God. It needs no adjusting, it does not need to be brought into line with modern-day thinking, but modern-day thinking which needs to conform to the Word and Wisdom of God (see 1 Cor. 3:19,20). The Word of God is truth and it is everlasting: “by grace are ye saved…not works” (Eph. 2:8,9 cf. 1 Pet. 1:23-25). In other words ‘You are not saved by works, but by grace. Not saved by works at all, but by grace alone’.