If it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace. (Rom. 11:6 NASB)
When a person gets grounded early in the doctrine of grace, he saves himself from a host of problems in later life. It is so basic to understand that salvation is a free gift of Gods grace and that it is given to those who not only do not deserve it but who in fact deserve the very opposite. There is nothing meritorious a person can do or become to earn eternal life. It is given to those who abandon any thoughts of personal worthiness but who rest their case on the worthiness of the Savior alone.
If we see that salvation is all of grace, then we can have full assurance. We can know that we are saved. If salvation depended in the slightest degree on ourselves and our miserable attainments, then we could never know for sure. We wouldnt know whether we had done enough good works or the right kind. But when it depends on the work of Christ, then there doesnt have to be any nagging doubt.
The same is true of our eternal security. If our continued safety somehow depended on our own ability to hold out, then we might be saved today and lost tomorrow. But as long as our safety depends on the Saviors ability to keep us, we can know we are eternally secure.
Those who live under grace are not helpless pawns of sin. Sin does have dominion over those under law because the law tells them what to do but doesnt give them the power to do it. Grace gives a person a perfect standing before God, teaches him to walk worthy of his calling, enables him to do it by the indwelling Holy Spirit, and rewards him for doing it.
Under grace, service becomes a joyful privilege, not a legal bondage. The believer is motivated by love, not by fear. The memory of what the Savior suffered to provide salvation inspires the saved sinner to pour out his life in devoted service.
Grace also enriches life by inspiring thanksgiving, worship, praise and adoration. The knowledge of who the Savior is, of what sinners we are by nature and by practice, and of all He has done for us causes our hearts to overflow in loving adoration to Him.
Theres nothing like the grace of God. Its the crown jewel of all His attributes. Get grounded in the truth of the sovereign grace of God and it will transfigure all of life.
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon