Grace Has a Cost

Grace is a word I hear tossed around a lot these days. We like talking about God’s grace, however I’m not sure the full concept of grace is truly grasped and understood. We like to talk about grace that covers us and grace that forgives our sins. But when we stop grace at that we turn the beauty of grace into “cheap grace.” We take this powerful life changing thing and turn it into something that is small and selfish. Isn’t grace so much more than that? Maybe God intended grace not to just save us but also to restore us and change us.

We can’t buy or earn grace; it’s given as a gift. Most of us have heard this preached to us for most of our lives. However, rarely have I heard of what our response should be once we receive God’s grace. 

You might be thinking why is this even important? When we take grace and use it like it’s our own personal gift, that we don’t have to pay or do anything for, then it’s cheap grace. But that’s simply not the truth, grace is anything but cheap. It cost Jesus’ life so that we can receive the gift of grace. Jesus did for us what we couldn’t do for ourselves. He did it not so we could have a free pass, but so we come back into a right relationship with Him.

True grace, costly grace, is worth more than gold; it isn’t cheap. It’s costly because it calls us to follow Jesus, bearing our own cross. It’s costly because it cost a man his life and could very well cost us our own. It’s costly because it doesn’t just forgive sin, it condemns sin. It’s costly because it took God sending His only Son to die on a cross for us to receive grace. It cost God dearly, and what cost God so much will cost us too. Yes it is a free gift to us, but true grace will bring change in our lives.

I like this definition of grace I heard in college: Grace allows us to come to God’s table, a table we do not deserve being at. It’s a free offer, but we still have to have manors.

Jesus’ parables and the call of his disciples point right to this. The disciples abandoned their previous life; parables describe people selling all they had to attain the “treasure” they found. It’s costly; Jesus never tries to hide that, somehow we just miss it. Maybe we don’t want to admit the work it takes or the sacrifices seem to uncomfortable. But then have we really received grace? Grace requires action on both sides; we can’t just accept the gift then go back to our old lives. True grace that costs transforms us into new people; grace demands change in our lives.

I firmly believe that grace does cover our past sins and will cover our future sins. It’s by grace and grace only, not by any work that we might do. However I am saying that we need to continually be watching ourselves and checking our actions. If we aren’t sacrificing for the sake of following God because of all He has done for us, I fear we haven’t fully received grace. I’m not doubting our salvation, I’m cautioning us to keep a watch on our lives and actions.

I’m going to end with a quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer:

Christianity without the living Christ is inevitably Christianity without discipleship, and Christianity without discipleship is always Christianity without Christ.

Grace is the best gift we could ever receive. It is given to us by nothing we have done, but everything Jesus did on the cross. It is costly; it cost Jesus his life and it will cost us too. True grace, costly grace demands action from us.

24 comments on “Grace Has a Cost

  1. I am in complete agreement with you. Grace is a gift that demands a response of giving our lives over to Him. I am beginning to recognise that the same Grace will enable us to live that new life. That the same Grace is absolutely sufficient for every situation, circumstance I face and I think unless I do recognise that I will fail because I can never be good, strong, determined enough.

    He is just amazing in that He does it all, we just? have to co-operate and somehow that can be the hardest thing of all.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Amen! Paul told the Church that grace can be frustrated through works. Jude says it can be perverted by the, “I’m saved; I can do whatever I want,” lifestyle . Titus 2:11-12 tells us that grace is a teacher that shows us how to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts and to live sober, righteous, and Godly lives…Grace takes action on our part.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Amen, amen and amen. When we choose to receive God’s extravagant gift tous, we have chosen to respond to Him. That response can either be ‘Father, I recognize how priceless your grace is, and I have nothing worthwhile to give you, but take it all anyway,’ OR we can say ‘thanks for the gift, I accept, but when I need you, I’ll call.’ Both a may lead to salvation, but only one will lead us to the heart of Jesus, to true fellowship with him.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Mm, yes. We don’t like to think about the cost, do we? Love the Bonhoeffer quote as well.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Grace offers the Acts 2:38 salvation plan to allow men to use their free will to accept salvation or reject it by refusing to obey.

    Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
    39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

    Bro. Winter

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Reblogged this on Finding Grace and commented:
    This person got it right. READ

    Liked by 1 person

  7. At What Cost?
    Most of us who have put our faith and trust in the finished work of our Lord Jesus Christ have at least some idea of the tremendous cost of our salvation. What is given freely to us cost the giver – God – an incredible price. Numerous sermons have been preached, and many scholarly papers have been written about the horrendous death Jesus Christ died. While His physical suffering is important for us to understand, I believe it is the tip of the salvation-cost ice-berg. I am going to talk briefly about His physical suffering, and then I want to examine in more depth what I believe to be the greater costs.

    By the time our Lord Jesus walked the earth, the Romans had raised the art of torture and painful execution to a totally different level. Their scourgings were intended to torture and humiliate their prisoners beyond belief. Their professional floggers knew exactly how much punishment a person could take without killing them outright, and that is how far they went. Our Lord Jesus was scourged until the whole back half of His body was a shredded, blood mess. Imagine being flogged naked for an hour with barbed-wire strands by several pros, while stretched on a flogging-post.

    Then He was paraded through the streets of Jerusalem, bleeding and half-dead, to a public place on a hill where they carried out their crucifixions. By the time they got Him there, He was so weak that they had to drag Him. He couldn’t even carry His own cross-bar, so they pressed someone else into service for that.

    The crucifixion itself was the most cruel punishment that had ever been devised. Those who were being executed were once again stripped naked. They wouldn’t be needing their clothes again anyway, and that was further humiliation. He was thrown on top of His cross, and His wrists and feet were nailed to it with crude iron spikes. Once the cross was raised vertically, His whole weight was supports by just three points. He hung there, between Heaven and earth, until He died of dehydration, blood-loss, suffocation and fatigue. While He suffered horribly, His suffering otherwise is what we will deal with next. Jesus wasn’t alone in suffering that horrible death that day. Two criminals were also crucified, one on each side of Him.

    Do we really understand WHY our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and died on that cross? Maybe I should put that question another way. Do we really understand the penalty for sin? The Bible says: “For the WAGES of SIN is DEATH…” (Romans 6:23) Death…yes, physical death, but more importantly, spiritual death. Spiritual death means separation from God, separation from all that is good, and union with all that is evil…for ALL ETERNITY.

    One friend told me that he was going to be partying in Hell while I sat on my cloud and played my harp. If those are his ideas of Heaven and Hell, he is sadly mistaken. Perhaps a better picture of hell is getting dropped in an inescapable prison yard, full of inmates, each with a Roman flogger, endlessly whipping each other and you…for all eternity. No love…only hate, no compassion…only disdain, no good…only EVIL. Oh, there WILL be people partying, but in Heaven, not in Hell. I can imagine that the Marriage Supper of the Lamb will be a party to end parties. Imagine Golden Corral, only infinitely better, hosted and provided by the God of all creation.

    Part of the penalty for sin is His curse upon us. God’s favor is portrayed as the light of His countenance shining upon us, so His curse, which is the opposite of His favor, is God’s “turning out the light” of His countenance upon us. Jesus Christ had NEVER been separated from His Father for so much as a nano-second in all eternity. The light of His Father’s countenance shone upon Him during His whole earthly journey, until He died on that cross. Jesus, Who was sinless, took upon Himself OUR sin, and when He died on that cross, He died for us as we should have died. Jesus experienced the totality of God’s wrath and curse…God “turned out the lights”, both physically and spiritually. God turned His back on His OWN Son. God was silent…absent, until He thundered from heaven, rolled the stone away, and breathed fresh life into His only begotten Son…our Savior.

    Do we see ourselves as the ones who crucified our Lord? Do we see ourselves as the REASON He went to that cross? Can we understand the full impact of what was done on that day of infamy?

    That IS the cost of our salvation. We can neither earn it, nor can we add or subtract from it. It is our job to humbly acknowledge our part in His death, and gratefully accept His gift.

    I pray that we do, and that our gratitude grows greater every passing day.

    The cost – beyond comprehension. God’s love – indescribable. His gift – beyond compare.


    Liked by 1 person

  8. I promise not to write a post here, ahem…
    Great post, thanks for it. Like to share Dwight Pentecost’s quote (he said) defining Grace.
    “Grace is that intrinsic quality of God’s being, or essence, by which He is spontaneously favorable in His disposition, and actions.” Always loved it and used it in classes.
    Bye Curtis


  9. You hit it hard! Bonhoeffer wrote “When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and die.” (Cost of Discipleship). I agree that God’s salvation (and concurrent sanctification) is the free gift that will cost me everything–what a beautiful paradox! We need to hear your post around the world. I’m retweeting it! Thanks.


  10. Love the Bonhoeffer quote!


  11. ‘Were the whole realm of nature mine,
    That were an offering far too small
    Love so amazing, so divine
    Demands my soul, my life, my all’


  12. Very true words. Grace is indeed costly. Unfortunately some take grace as a license to sin. But the very essence of grace is that God created us for good works that we may walk in it (Eph 2:10).Grace is given for us to live a life pleasing to God.

    Bless you for writing this.

    Liked by 1 person


    Thanks for the follow, I’ve done likewise. I look forward to your postings.

    Continued blessings, Emma


  14. Glad to meet you, brother. Praise God for this work and others through you! He has us writing similar things at the same time. See Resting in Christ – Part II (Swallowing up Mortality with Life) – The Lord Is With Us


  15. Good thoughts on grace. You are so right. It was costly and we are bought with a high price. And thanks for visiting my blog.


  16. Thank you so much for your visit and like. God’s blessings to you.


  17. Grace is Jesus Christ paying our spiritual hospital bill. God is our surgeon and post-surgery physical therapist, but we still have to go under the knife and do the physical therapy. And it’s still going to hurt. But if we don’t get the spiritual surgery, we are going to spiritually die.

    Good thoughts in your blog. Grace isn’t just Jesus going into the courtroom and offering to take your sentence. It’s that, but it’s more than that. As I learn more about God’s grace, I find that my concept of grace gets further un-cheapened.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Amen! Oh if I had the time to type right now I’d tell you a story that had me fuming last week over a ignorant mans comments… I was so happy that God gave me the courage to speak up and defend HIM yet thru words God would approve of!


  19. Pingback: Grace Has a Cost – nzidemybrane

  20. Now I begin to see God’s gracious hands through my current job.


  21. Really interesting thoughts on Grace. Thank you, it is very helpful.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I love how you point out how Grace can be cheapened and question the after action of its acceptance. This is a place I feel deep longing for the souls of others. Christians in most churches in my experience get into reaching and counting the yeses, and rejoicing when someone will breathe out a sinners prayer as though saying the line means we got another one. By no means am I diminishing the importance of that confession of faith. However I don’t believe that enough on any scale. Like people get married, professed, signed, sealed. But ultimately their commitment to that (aside from some things that the other parties actions can impact) is based on their actions of remaining faithful and devoted to that person, not the “I married you, now I’m just sticking it out til one of us died because I stick to my word!”.
    That second option is not longer in unity but driven by the law. To walk in love, the only law written by grace, means it has to be active every day. If we are told that we will “know them by their fruit”, how does that relate? If a fruit tree stops producing fruit, that means it’s dead. And that is what I fear most for the sake of eternity for others. Growth doesn’t mean having done this much more outreach and paid for this on behalf of others, though I certainly hope this is an extension of it. It’s that too often this has become the mark of success even within Christians circles. This measure is by the world’s standards. But what about individual fruit? Does it change the way we see others or treat our own families? When I say family, I mean in particular, others in the church? If people are suppose to know us by how we love one another, what does that say about going to church in your Sunday bests? How is it that when Christians hurt, the church is one of the most dangerous places to me? I wonder if we compared the church in Acts to the ones we have now, would many of them look similar?
    Yes Grace is most certainly free, but it’s one thing to accept the concept of something and another to hold onto it in the way we breathe oxygen, constant intake and outtake. I will restrain myself as I could launch into a novel right here.
    None of my comments with question marks are with expected response but rather to encourage others to think. However, though I have no doubt of your intentions writing, I want to caution wording choice; in the same way we can’t get grace on our own accord, in the same way we breathe oxygen but are not the creators of it, what we do is not about how we do it but how the Spirit does it through us. Here is a fine line where often the enemy is given position that we don’t even realize, I see what I need to do to try to figure out how I can change it. This can begin the spiral of dying fruit. It subtly becomes about me doing it for God, rather than through Him. Heave is only reached through Christ, as is change only accomplished thought the light of revelation given by the Holy Spirit and the waters of worship. It’s by this that His presence can truly grow within us to reach further than the limitation of our own hands and hearts.
    For this reason when praying, I really encourage to ask not just the ability to do certain things, but the revelations Jesus’s sight and heart, not to pray for hearts to be broken for what breaks His, but to be filled with what fills His. Broken means looking at missing pieces while filling means knowing what makes all things whole. This is part of how grace has changed my own perception.

    Well written. I love reading when others are genuinely speaking the true heart of Christ. Amen!

    El Lenjel


  23. Thanks for your most insightful and thought-provoking comments on “Grace has a cost.”

    Thanks also for the “like” on Dr.J’s Apothecary Shoppe.


  24. It is grace that enables us to forgive others, to exercise humility, to abandon pride, to admit our wrongs, to turn from our wicked ways as Solomon prayed. How I need the deepening of that work of grace, the sanctification of the Spirit in my life.


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