Grace - Merited or Unmerited?

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by gekko, May 5, 2006.

  1. gekko

    gekko
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    this has probably been on here many times before. I just want to know what peoples opinions are.

    now let me make clear that I do not believe that we are saved by our works.

    but I will let you know I believe in merited grace.
    haha. most of you will probably condemn me for saying that. i'd better buckle up for this one!

    no i am not contradicting myself. how? well. God resists the proud and giveth grace to the humble.
    therefore, we must become humble before God before He gives us grace. humble being - having a repentant heart for example.

    "For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he with hold from them..."

    oh what? wait. i forgot the rest of the verse.

    "For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them THAT WALK UPRIGHTLY."

    oh what? that means that if we dont walk uprightly, God will withhold that which is good.
    therefore we need to walk uprightly in God's eyes for God to provide us grace.

    i've said what i needed to say. now on with the show.

    God bless.
    gek.
     
  2. Matt Black

    Matt Black
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    The whole point of grace is it is unmerited. Merited grace is a contradiction in terms.

    Re the verse you quoted: it is absolutely impossible for any man to walk uprightly in his own strength and natural abilities. It is only through the grace - that free, unmerited gift of salvation - mediated to us by Jesus' death and resurrection that we are able through faith to appropriate the righteousness that is by rights Jesus' alone.
     
  3. Claudia_T

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    Gekko,


    I think it is admirable that you seem to realize that we need to keep the law of God. But I dont think you realize just how helpless we really are.

    Yeah, its kind of like when I told you Gekko about how we cant even come to Jesus with the Holy Spirit drawing us and so if we sit around and wait till we make ourselves "better" before we come to Jesus, we will never come. Because we cant get better without His help.

    2Cor:3:5: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God


    Claudia
     
  4. Chemnitz

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    If it was merited then it would not be a gift. But because we have done nothing in order to deserve grace it is given to us as a gift through Jesus.
     
  5. Nicholas25

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    Although we can't do anything without God because of our flesh, I know God is pleased when our heart desires to do so, even though we can't because of our wicked flesh.
     
  6. Nicholas25

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    Although we can't do anything without God because of our flesh, I know God is pleased when our heart desires to do so, even though we can't because of our wicked flesh.
     
  7. gekko

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    God will not give us grace if we are not humble before him.

    who makes us humble? the Lord does. one can still have the Lord yet not his grace. right? right.

    now im not saying that the law will save us. or anything like that. i realize fully that we cannot keep all the law.

    the only way one can walk uprightly is with the holy spirit right? well, one can have the holy spirit to help walk uprightly, and do all the christ-like things - and yet still not recieve God's grace because of the state of the heart of the person. "many will say Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, cast out demons in your name, healed in your name? and the Lord will respond with "depart from me ye workers of iniquity, i never knew you."

    never knew you... never had grace. never had true repentance to beable to recieve grace.

    one does not recieve grace just because he says "Jesus is Lord!" nah. its a matter of the heart as well. the Lord looks at the heart.

    this is what we have got to do (with the help of the Lord to do so) to recieve God's grace (in order i think):

    -Become humble before the Lord (no man comes to the Son except the father draws him - cant remember the verse)
    -Repent of your sins (lawlessness) towards God because repentance is vertical - not horizontal
    -Walk uprightly in the Lord. now that you've repented towards the Lord. the Lord will help you to live uprightly in Him according to scripture.

    "God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble"
    "for i am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
    then Psalm 84:11.

    those three things (that i've noticed) we must have (with the help of the Lord) before God gives us grace.
     
  8. gekko

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    grace is a gift. yes. but not a free gift.

    is there a verse that says grace is a free gift?
     
  9. Claudia_T

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    Well I agree with Gekko,

    The Bible does say grace is a free gift, yet at the same time it is true we must humble ourselves before God to receive this gift. (verses are below)

    Because look how the Bible presents this also as something we must give up all for and BUY. You buy it in the sense that you must be willing to give up everything for it. Like when Paul said that he was willing to give up all for the cross of Christ:


    Rv:3:18: I counsel thee to BUY of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

    Mt:13:46: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.


    The Bible also talks about the fac
    t that we must fall upon the Rock and be BROKEN:
    Mt:21:44: And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.


    Rom:5:15: But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

    Rom:5:16: And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

    Rom:5:18: Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

    [ May 05, 2006, 02:59 PM: Message edited by: Claudia_T ]
     
  10. Jarthur001

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    Romans 4 tells what Grace is..

    *******************
    NASB
    2For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.

    3For what does the Scripture say? "ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS."

    4Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due.

    5But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness,

    *******************

    The Meassage
    2If Abraham, by what he did for God, got God to approve him, he could certainly have taken credit for it. But the story we're given is a God-story, not an Abraham-story. 3What we read in Scripture is, "Abraham entered into what God was doing for him, and that was the turning point. He trusted God to set him right instead of trying to be right on his own."

    4If you're a hard worker and do a good job, you deserve your pay; we don't call your wages a gift. 5But if you see that the job is too big for you, that it's something only God can do, and you trust him to do it--you could never do it for yourself no matter how hard and long you worked--well, that trusting-him--to-do-it is what gets you set right with God, by God. Sheer gift.

    *******************

    Amplified
    2For if Abraham was justified ([a]established as just by acquittal from guilt) by good works [that he did, then] he has grounds for boasting. But not before God!

    3For what does the Scripture say? Abraham believed in (trusted in) God, and it was credited to his account as righteousness (right living and right standing with God).(A)

    4Now to a laborer, his wages are not counted as a favor or a gift, but as an obligation (something owed to him).

    5But to one who, not working [by the Law], trusts (believes fully) in Him Who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited to him as righteousness (the standing acceptable to God).

    *******************

    KJV
    2For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.

    3For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

    4Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

    5But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

    *******************

    Young
    2for if Abraham by works was declared righteous, he hath to boast -- but not before god;

    3for what doth the writing say? `And Abraham did believe God, and it was reckoned to him -- to righteousness;'

    4and to him who is working, the reward is not reckoned of grace, but of debt;

    5and to him who is not working, and is believing upon Him who is declaring righteous the impious, his faith is reckoned -- to righteousness:

    *******************

    In this case the NIV says it best.

    NIV
    2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness."[a]

    4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness.


    In Christ..James
     
  11. gekko

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    merited grace has nothing to do with good works.

    get at least that much into your head. and then read what claudia and i have said over again.

    its not works. but us becoming humble(with the help of the Lord). having a repentant heart towards God because we've become humble. and then, with the help of the Lord, living uprightly.

    nothing of our own though. no-one comes to the Son except the father draws him.

    then are we able to recieve grace.
     
  12. Claudia_T

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    Yes, humility is more what I was talking about, not works.

    Because how can you receive any gift from God unless you are first made humble? You wont even realize that you need anything.

    Lk:18:14: I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.


    Luke 1:
    52: He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
    53: He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.


    Mk:2:17: When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.


    Rv:3:17: Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked
     
  13. Jarthur001

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    gekko'

    You posted..
    merited grace has nothing to do with good works.



    Merited = deserved


    What do you deserve? I deserve hell. I'm a sinner saved by grace.

    What will you demand from God for He owes it to you? I cannot demand anything..He owes me nothing!!! I owe Him my life.

    How will I make it to heaven?

    Only thought Gods Grace.
     
  14. gekko

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    i like how claudia put it: humility.

    exactly. we can only get to heaven by God's grace.


    answer me this: is it possible for a person to accept Jesus as Lord - and yet still not have God's grace?
     
  15. Claudia_T

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    Yeah I think "merited" may be the wrong word to use there..


    wouldnt it be more like a preparation to receive something?
     
  16. gekko

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    yah. that's what i was thinking as well.

    looked up 'merited' in the dictionary. and it does say something like "you deserve a raise because of all the good work you've done"

    hmm... what would be another word for it?
    i think the word 'merited' confuses people alot. God is not the author of confusion.

    *currently looking for a new theological sounding word that would fit the phrase "preparation to recieve" or something like that...*

    God bless.
     
  17. Jarthur001

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    Humility would HELP control our pride, but it does nothing for our lust. The bad thing about humility is that you can never be fully humble in and of yourself. As soon as you know you have it, your pride in knowing it, makes you lose it.

    Be that as it may, this is still not linked to grace.

    This is grace...

    I'm guilty...yet God saved me.

    I'll address the rest of this later. I need to go home.


    In Christ..James

    BTW...i'm leaving tonight to go out of town for the weekend. If I do not get back to this tonight, it will be monday.
     
  18. Claudia_T

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    Have a nice weekend, James, if you dont get back tonight...
     
  19. Kamoroso

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    1 Cor 15:21-23 21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
    22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
    23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.

    The power of sin was such that it infected all of humanity, not just those who sinned, but all generations thereafter. Is the power of the living God any less potent? Certainly not. As the scriptures say, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” Sin is not more powerful than God’s grace, or if you will, forgiveness. No one would be alive now if it was. It is only by God's grace that after the fall, humanity has life at all. No poetry intended.


    Rom 5:6-19 6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
    7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
    8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
    9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
    10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
    11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
    12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
    13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.
    14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.
    15 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.
    16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.
    17 For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
    18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
    19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.


    Verse eighteen above makes it perfectly clear, that just as all were condemned by the offence of Adam and Eve, so also have all been justified by the righteousness of Christ. There is nothing you and I can do about what has already been done to, or for us, in Adam, and Christ. Adams sin infected all of us. Christ’s righteousness has justified all of us. It could be no other way.

    The only reason humanity is able to choose salvation, or not, is because what Christ accomplished for us, was every bit as powerful as what happened to us when we sinned. Nay, even more powerful, for it overcame and conquered the enemy. It did so in the flesh, that is, our flesh. Now we are free to choose to serve whom we will,-“whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?”(Rom. 6:16) Not by our might, nor by our power, but by His Spirit, saith the Lord.

    As soon as humanity sinned, God decided to forgive them, even to die for them. Thus Christ is the Lamb who was slain from the foundation of the world (Rev. 13:8). Forgiveness is a two way street though. If I become angry and slap you in the face, only you can forgive me of that, and only I can confess and acknowledge my sin to you, and ask for your forgiveness. Christ forgave, and died for every single human being. The thing is done, and nothing can change that. So now, what are we going to do about it? That is what this is all about, what is humanity going to do about what God has done for them.

    Who will make themselves right with God, let them confess their sins, for- “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1Jn 1:9&10) God has done all that can be done through His Son Jesus Christ. Through Him we are forgiven, and justified. The Holy Spirit is sent to us by Him to convict us of our sin, and His righteousness, that we might confess, and live. It’s up to us now, what will we do?

    Those who will not acknowledge, and confess sin for what it is, sin, cannot be forgiven. Therefore, they cannot be made right with God. God will not sustain sin forever. Those who choose it over God, will perish when it does. Thus the question remains for each of us, what is sin, and am I ready to acknowledge and confess my sin to God? He has already done, and is continuing to do His part through His Holy Spirit, will we do ours?

    By for now. Y. b. in C. Keith
     

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