Amazing grace how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost but now I am found
Was blind but now I see
Famous opening verse to a famous song. I love both the song and the title to a book by Phillip Yancey, “What’s so amazing about grace?”
Here are some of my answers to Yancey’s question, “What’s so amazing about grace?”
- Freedom – Grace is the atmosphere of God’s love in action to set us free from sin, religion, and self works; so that we can simply be the “creation of God” to live in His unfolding story of redemption!
- No other religion, philosophy, theory or world-view other than Christianity has the power of grace at its core.
- “Scandalous” is how Yancey describes grace. Think about it; you are “let off the proverbial hook” without earning it, deserving of it, working for it, or suffering for it – God’s gracious love sets you free at no cost to you – it’s scandalous!
- All are invited – Jesus had a reputation, “friend of sinners”. Grace simply creates space for everyone to be included in complete redemption.
- There ain’t no such thing as “cheap grace”. So-called “cheap grace” is something else. Grace cost God EVERYTHING. There is nothing cheap about giving your only child as a sacrifice for sinners!
- Grace inspires holiness. Things of great value are always really looked after. When someone is gripped by grace, you will do everything in your power to live in it and look after it; and really that is what holiness is about anyway!
- Grace spills over to others. When someone has encountered God’s grace, it flows to others. You find yourself more accepting and seeing others from a different point of view.
- Grace is permission to quit judging others. Always being right, being better than others and comparing yourself is really burdensome work. The grace of God relieves you of all that heavy stuff.
- Grace doesn’t hold onto the hurts inflicted by others. Jesus taught us to pray, “…forgive me my sins as I forgive those who sin against me”. Grace gives us the ability, the desire and the power to “let go” of those who are in our debt.
- Grace gives space for faith. With faith comes doubt, and grace enables faith to overcome doubt. It is by faith that we please God, and pleasing God is pleasing, and it is the thing that helps us make sense of life.
And so I could go on….
When we’ve been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun
We’ve no less days to sing God’s Grace
Than when we first begun.