Eph. 2:4-5 – 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;)
One thing that is clear in God’s word is that mankind’s only hope is the grace of God. Strip away all the accolades of vain glory, remove the earthly material of temporal wealth, set a man face to face with eternity and all that is left is a shriveled up sinner trembling before the majesty of divine justice. God may be ignored, discounted and put out of mind by man for the time of his life, but finally he will be compelled to appear before him with whom we have to do, and in that day the greatest of men will bow under the jurisdiction of the Almighty. Sin will be brought to account, and the righteous and faithful Judge will exact justice without partiality. The boasting of men will not stand in that day, and any hope in life that provided them confidence will be found wanting. Again I say, God’s grace is man’s only hope.
Now the time for grace is now! Do not expect to be met with grace when you stand before Him, having rejected that which He offers today! The door of opportunity is open now, and the riches of his mercy and his great love is commended toward you in this present time. However, that will not last forever. God abounds in longsuffering, but His longsuffering is not eternal. Justice will one day replace the offer of grace as God’s righteousness arises to unleash the consuming fire of His holiness. In that day, it will be too late. Grace is speaking now!
Now grace is such that it demands that God provide for the satisfaction of His own justice. Man’s works are eternally useless for the justification of himself, the very best we can offer being filthy rags. There is no restitution that we can produce to restore the offence of our sin against God’s holiness, and there is no deed by which we may change our lot. God must provide everything for us. This is what grace declares!
Rom. 11:5 – And 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.
It is very common for men to believe that they must participate in their salvation. “Meet God halfway” is the theme of man’s religion, and while this may seem reasonable, the Bible shows us that this is wholly insufficient and will not end well. There is no meeting God halfway in justification. It will either be all God or it will be all you! That is the nature of grace—it excludes works.
Now what God does by grace He does by Himself. We do not participate in the provision of what God gives. We simply receive it by faith as we rest upon the credits of what He has done for us. God does it all, not because we are lazy in sins, but because we are dead in sins. We are actually without strength to do any part of it on our own, so His grace is our only hope.
This God knows, and it His knowledge of our impotent state that has moved His loving heart to undertake for us what we otherwise could never attain. In the extraordinary love of God, He sent Jesus Christ to die for our sins, not when we were righteous or good, but when were His ungodly enemies and yet sinners, hopelessly condemned to die the eternal death that our sins deserve. He who knew no sin was made sin for us, and His life He freely gave that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. Grace has provided the gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus, and God offers His very own righteousness to us as a free gift that is received by faith. There are no works of our own required or allowed. Jesus paid it all! This is the glad tidings of the gospel, and God’s grace is man’s ONLY hope of salvation!