Grace is God’s favor expressed to sinful humankind apart from any human works or worth. This grace came through Jesus; not to condemn the world but that the world through Him might be saved. Through grace we received full pardon for our sin; thus, cure the disease of sin in our life: but one must believe. The Bible confirms (Jn. 3:16-17)

The word we hear from many Christians when engaging in some ungodly act is “we are under grace”; “I am not under any bondage” “we are no more under the law”. Many ministers and Christians have been and are still misconstruing the interpretation of grace. In today’s churches, grace has been turned to “doing what you like” or “freedom of right” or “freedom to sin and then repent”. This is a wrong assumption and is misleading.

The liberty we received through grace is meant for a purpose; to free us from the bondage of sin and its consequences. However, “doing what you like” or “freedom of right” without restraints will lead to entangling oneself again into a deeper sin.

The word grace stands for the unmerited favor that we received when we gave our lives to Christ. This grace frees us from sin and its power; forgives and erase the penalty of any judgment that we deserved as a sinner.

This grace bestowed unto us is given out of love that the Father has for us; thus, He sent the grace in the form of Man, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God.. The grace produces the freedom; the grace becomes our umbrella; protecting us from rain and heat of sin as long as we remain under the umbrella. Therefore, briefly put, among what grace stands for are,

  1. Separates believer unto God through Christ
  2. Sets a believer free in order to serve God continually
  3. Believer walks by means of the Holy Spirit
  4. Liberty through grace empowers a believer to live a quality life in the Lord
  5. Holy Spirit helps the believer to avoid the deeds of the flesh and its dominancy (Gal. 5:16-19)
  6. Holy Spirit helps the believer’s life in demonstration of the fruit of the spirit (Gal. 22-23).

Grace does not make Christianity a cage, neither is it a dumping ground

Christianity is a city of refuge under the canopy of our Lord Jesus Christ. There, your freedom from the devil and everlasting destruction is guaranteed. The church is a city of refuge as long as the church is under the Headship of our Lord Jesus Christ – everlasting high priest – He founded the church. He admits everybody no matter his/her deplorable state. That is grace.

Likewise, Christianity is not a dumping ground; the fact that all are called does not mean the church will retain those who refuse to change. The church is a place of learning, a place of growth and a place of reform. If a sinner refuses to reform, pollution of that church is inevitable.

Our coming to the church or confessing Jesus Christ as Lord (justification) is not the end of salvation. However, it is the beginning of our faith journey: how can you remain saved if you don’t live by faith? Coming to Christ means you are set apart from your old sinful nature to a new life in Christ.

The church is open for the entire population of the world to enter for salvation reason; as many as come to Jesus are accepted. They are accepted not in order to continue in their sinfulness but to be transformed and reformed, and win them to Christ. If it is not for reformation, then the church will be infected and polluted on the long run. Jesus Christ came into the world to save the lost; to save the lost is to reroute them to the way of the Lord.

The indifference of Ministers toward improving believers

Can a Minister be held accountable for the wrong in the church? Yes; he would be held accountable for behavior or attitude noticed unchecked. Though every man has a right to his/her own conviction (liberty), yet, this conviction cannot be in opposition to the word of God; law inclusive. God cannot hate something and you want to place your own conviction over His. You cannot please and worship God with what is against his will.

By not denouncing sin and works of the flesh in our churches, we are encouraging them and we approve of it. This is where a minister is tested. Should ministers continue to be indifferent to pollution, corruption or indecency in the church?

Pauline’s doctrine, not against the Laws of God

Apostle Paul, who was the Apostle of grace, did not encourage sin in the churches to which he wrote his epistles; his emphasis was for the Jews not to impose Judaism on gentiles before they can be allowed to become a Christian. Haven preached against legalism (man-made laws, not the law given by God) and the curses associated with breaking the Laws, he concluded by saying

“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?  ” (Rom. 6:1-4).

Paul did not encourage sin in the church; rather, he is saying that we should be dead to sin. .

Apostle Paul was telling the Galatians,

“but if while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are sinners, is Christ therefore a Minister of sin? Certainly not.”(Gal. 2:17).

The only way we can live for God is to be dead to sin. The determination to stop living in sin should be our first priority when we give our lives to Christ. A little tolerance of sin has a tremendous impact or influence on any church that tolerates it

Apostle Paul said.

 “Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?” (1Cor 5:6)

One question that kept surging is this; is Christianity progressing, stagnant or retrogressing today? Why is this question? Unchallenged sin, moral decadence, worldly acts and unholy behavior in the churches can contaminate the whole Christianity.

Jesus’ supreme and final payment for our ransom, His death on the cross frees us that believe on Him from the curse of the Law and slavery to sin. Therefore, we are not to live in sin anymore but to leave sin and grow toward spiritual maturity and perfection. We cannot live in sin and expect grace to abound.


Why do we need God’s grace?

Grace is an empowerment

The grace which gives us our liberty empowers us to live in the spirit; the action not to live in sin becomes natural and involuntary. This is the lesson of reality which we need to teach new and old unregenerate believers.

Freedom in Christ centers on love; likewise, the whole law centers on love for God and others.

Show me your love for God, it reflects in your love for others. Likewise, show me your love for others, it will reflect in your obedience to the word of God which is inclusive of the laws.

Apostle Paul said,

Is the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not! …  Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.  But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.” (Gal. 3:21-25)

Judging by these quotes of Apostle Paul, he never advocated for Christian liberty without some restraints. If not, he wouldn’t be talking about sin, things done in flesh, worldliness or things that breaks the relationship between us and God.

Paul was talking against rules, ceremonial laws or doctrine made after the manner of men that prevent the admittance of converts into Christian fold.

Is the Bible divided? Grace does not make one part of the Bible of no effect. The law is a guide, not a cage; and does not take away our right in the Lord. Apostle Paul warns because he knew that people would turn this liberty to license to follow their selfish sinful ways.

Most preaching that we hear today stops salvation at justification. It is preaching about grace without caution for misuse of the liberty it offers.


When can we experience God’s grace

Does Grace ends at justification?


We are saved so that we can have a lifestyle that is characterized by good work. What God did was out of His mercy and kindness that He located and reaches out to save us. The Bible declares

“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,  even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved) (Eph. 2:4-5).

Living under grace should be an attitude of appreciation which should encourage and empower us to remain under that grace, submitting to the Almighty God for the mighty work of our salvation.

True, no one comes to God by himself or through religiosity; God’s love provides this free gift to mankind. If we receive or claim this grace, then what should we do? Or what should be the message from the ministers of God to believers? In another way; one of the advantages of grace is seen in God demonstrating His love and righteousness by overlooking those sins that we have “previously” committed because of our faith in Jesus. Do we go again to continue in that sin or waywardness? At least, there must show an element of breaking away from that sin if not total denunciation.

There is always that claim by many believers that man is weak to obey the law because of our sinful nature. If our sinful nature is the problem that we cannot obey the law, then it is necessary to subject that nature under the grace which will empower us to mortify that sinful nature.

After justification, the intention of the devil is to make us disobey God’s commandment. The Lord Jesus knew this and that it was difficult to obey God’s law completely; He understands what attraction of temptation is, and He knows man’s predicament concerning this because He has experienced it. However, He has also empowered us through grace to overcome the devil.

For one to enjoy this grace to the fullest; a Christian no longer lives according to the flesh or under the control of their sinful human nature. Instead, with the spirit living in believers, empowering them, they will live to please God. Holy Spirit helps us in our area of weakness. Living under grace is for a believer’s life to be lead by the Holy Spirit. Walking each moment by faith in God’s word under the spiritual control assures absolute victory over the desire of our sinful nature.

In the liberty that believers proclaim in today’s churches, Apostle Paul cautions that we should not put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way (Rm. 14:3). What does this implies? Shall we be in liberty and do those things that are unrighteous, unholy, ungodly, untrue, or those things which are offensive to others in the church? But after justification, there is the need to grow spiritually continually. That is grace at work.

Apostle Paul said in 2Cor. 5:17,

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

A believer’s life should change because through justification he/she has started the process of a new being, transformed into the likeness of Christ. That believer is no more living for him/her self (all past conceited life), but he/she lives for Christ. A believer still living for him/her self after justification has received the grace of God without understanding what it is.

Apostle Paul said in 2Cor. 6:2,

“In an acceptable time I have heard you,
And in the day of salvation I have helped you. Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation”

Many believers believed that all that is needed for grace to abound is to confess Jesus. Although, Paul did not encourage isolation from unbeliever, unregenerate believer or an erred believer; however, he did discourage compromising with there sinful values and practices..

Many prosperity preachers have made many weak and unknowledgeable believers to stumble because of their indifference and ignoring the spiritual situation of some of these believers. Apostle Paul says,

“But beware lest somehow this liberty of yours become a stumbling block to those who are weak” (1Cor. 8:9).

 If we are saved by grace (Justification); then we should live by grace (Sanctification), that we may enjoy undeserved blessing from our loving Father. The ongoing process whereby the Holy Spirit works in believers, making their lives holy, separated from their old ways and to God in order to be more like Him.


How can we experience God’s grace?

Sanctification through saving grace is not accomplished or progressive without renewal of the mind; accomplished through the word of God. The mind plays a key role; if it submits to the word of God, it puts off the old man and puts on the new man (Jesus). As believers, we need empowerment of the Holy Spirit; the propeller and the divine driving force that pilots our way of righteousness.

Very often, Paul preaches grace then comes back to present a way to keep up (sanctification) with that grace. For example, after he had talked about grace through faith and the mystery of his gospel; then he mentioned the evil that may result in not keeping the teaching of Christ.

“This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart;  who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness” (Eph. 4:17-19).

Paul advised on what to do and what not to do. We need to be careful about what we think, read, watch, say or do. One of Paul’s emphases is for believer to walk in the spirit and be imitator of God’s action. Why this caution if our liberty is to do what we like as claimed by some? Shall we continue to say “walk accordingly” without also saying the repercussion of not doing so? Let the people know what is good and what is bad; what is acceptable and what is not.

For example, as good as electricity is, it gives light, it generates power, it makes possible for mass production and many other benefits.; however, consumers need to know also that they cannot touch life wire or touch a melting wire. Ignorance is not an excuse to disobey the word of God or not knowing what grace stands for. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hand of the Almighty God.

Avoid distractions as you grow in grace

Believers should watch their steps and path to avoid contact with undesirable influences – cultism, fetish evil association, homosexuals, indecency and immoral practices. These and more are found inside and outside of the church. There are so many flamboyances in the world today and if a believer attempts to be imitator of those things, he/she will be playing around devil’s traps and territory.

Truth, nothing but the truth

Teaching the truth and living the truth is what retains heavenly believers and not lies or mingling of the word of God with philosophy. Fortunately and unfortunately, Technology controls life in this end time; and the devil is taking advantage of mass media, brainstorming and brain washing the masses with ideologies that opposes the will of God; thus, winning over the mind of man.

Continual growth should characterize the walk with Christ; this is the assignment of the ministers to believers. Moreover, believers must be aware of those combining worldly philosophies with the gospel.

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Rom. 12:2).

As believers, our interest is not simply to be saved but that we should advance to maturity in Christ. This should always be the message of grace and not prosperity craving as many claimed grace to be. Every believer needs to seek the ongoing power that is the day-to-day experience of being in Christ.

One who is under grace is more than exercising faith or believe; but also do works that can be seen as things done in union with or in the will of God. We are sanctified through saving grace.

Antidote for Keeping under grace and not endangering our liberty

The scripture says

Put on the whole armor of God (Eph. 6:10-13)

The fact that we do not earn grace also applies we cannot keep under grace without being strong in the Lord. Believers must stay under the canopy of the armor of God so that they do not fallout of the grace. Being under grace does not prevent us from temptation or danger unless we guard ourselves with the armor of God; this is what makes grace abound in our lives. Therefore, let us guide ourselves; how?

  1. Do not fallout of your love for Christ – grace
  2. Be faithful in all situation
  3. Do not compromise with the things of this world or satan enjoyment that entices one to sin
  4. Do not allow yourself to be induced into corruption
  5. examine your stand with Lord every moment – growing spiritually
  6. You are not just a church goer, but you should hold fast to the truth and faithfully worship the Lord.


Steps to maintain God’s grace

Our fellowship with the father must be sound

If we are in grace and we continue in our old sinful practices, we have no fellowship with God. Have we then been washed clean of our sin by the precious blood of Jesus? God cannot compromise His holiness to accommodate sin and worldly lust. Though we live in the world but we are not of the world. The scripture admonishes us not to let sin reign in our mortal body that we should obey it in its lusts (Rom. 6:12-14).

We are pardoned; and not to go back again into what we have been pardoned

We need to be on guard against sinful tendencies. Though occasional sin cannot be avoided; however, it is an abuse of the grace we received if we continue in a consistent lifestyle of sin; active rebellion against the law of God; habitual sinful conduct; and ungodly attitude.

How can we live as Christians without being conscious of the sin/s that causes our separation from God in the first place? When talking of grace, every believer must not be ignorant of the law because it helps to reveal sin; but grace empowers us to stay away from it. Though, awareness of the law does not make us justified but faith in Christ.

Let us quit blaming law for disobeying the law

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phi. 4:13).  God’s purpose for the law is for love. The law is a guide to effecting this love. It is the failures of man to give love a chance that resulted to sin. Should we blame the law for revealing sin in our lives or we should be grateful that the law made us to be aware of it.

Apostle Paul says, “Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not! On the contrary, we establish the law”. If by the law is the knowledge of sin, then with grace abounding, let’s keep ourselves away from sin.

Our salvation must be genuine                                                                        

Let us strive and work to obtain a genuine salvation, let us have this in mind that our salvation is not a one time event, it is more than an instantaneous experience; it is a journey of life time. It is the long process of becoming more and more like Jesus. This is what we know as sanctification; the process by which we are free from the power of sin; this continuing process of salvation will eventually be completed in our glorification when we are saved from the presence of sin before the Almighty God.

Old things not found in the will of God must pass away

One of the ways by which grace may abound is for present-day believers to refuse to return to the attraction of this world and the pleasure of sin. They must be in subjection to God; allowing the Holy Spirit to empower them to serve God.  Grace was given to men and women of old who trusted in the Lord; likewise, grace is presently and permanently and forever available to all who believe in Christ.

We must not be ignorant of truth and sin

We need to be vigilant in the course of Christ, because of wolves in sheep’s clothing (Matt. 7:15). Teaching or preaching of grace can be dangerous when perverted carnally. Some ministers promises spiritual growth but do not satisfy the hunger of God’s people for the truth. It is the truth that we gained from the word of our Lord Jesus Christ that sets us free and gives us our liberty.

Jesus said,

“If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (Jn.8:31-32)

There is moral laxity in our churches today: In order to abound and enjoy the grace given by God, Our ministers and leaders should be ambitious to teach the word of Christ than being filled with their personal ego

Be a disciple; an example representing Jesus Christ.

The name of Jesus is blasphemed among unbelievers everyday because of the ungodly and dubious attitude of both ministers and their members. As redeemed believers, we should not compromise our faith and new life with evil or any ungodly attitude. As Christians, we need to understand grace and our liberty.

The Lord Jesus said,

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing… “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples” (Jn. 15:5-8).

Jesus said,

“Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.  And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”      (Jn. 8:34-36)

If we play our own part faithfully by staying away from those things that separated us from Him in the first place, God is faithful to fulfill His own promises toward us; we shall be free indeed; and He will bless us with the benefits of grace.


Benefits of Grace

So far, my point is this; let us avoid manipulating and distorting the message of grace and the liberty it offers; we should not misconstrue it for selfish and damnable motives.

The message of grace is far beyond the worldly acclaimed prosperity liberty; to do what you like or accumulation of wealth and riches under the guise of running a church for Christ. However, grace enhances a life of personal holiness and quality of life; validating our faith in Christ as genuine; helping us to overcome former lust and ignorance, and not conforming to world’s order. Here are some benefits we derive from grace,

God’s grace speaks of a Christian’s legal and family position “in Christ”. In order to enjoy the benefits of that grace and the liberty in it, we need to keep that position by abiding in Him and obeying Him. Grace is a blessing that spring forth from the knowledge of God and Jesus.

Through grace believers are justifiedwe identified with Christ and received the following unmerited favors

  • Jesus tastes death for every one
  • We obtained mercy
  • We received forgiveness of our previous sin/s
  • We received full pardon for our sin
  • Removal of sin penalty
  • God’s righteous demand is satisfied through Christ’s death
  • Imputation of Christ’s righteousness in believer’s life – transfer Jesus’ righteousness to those who believe in Him
  • Believers (former sinners) declared righteous
  • We are savedThrough grace believers are deliveredwe received miraculous deliverance in the following ways
  • Redemptive power of Christ on believer’s behalf
  • Liberty obtained
  • Freedom from sin
  • Freedom from the power of sin
  • Freedom from the bondage of sin
  • Liberation from the dominion of darkness
  • We are protected from the power of the devil
  • On account of Jesus’ death, He over thrones the damages caused by sin on man from the position of enmity to friendship with God
  • Cured from the disease and curse of sin
  • Through the blood of the covenant shed by Jesus, we are sanctified (Heb. 10:29)

Through grace believers received empowerment for sanctification by Holy Spiritto do those things which were impossible while we were in sin. We received,

  • Empowerment for regeneration
  • Empowerment for sanctification – grace establishes truth and does not allow one to be tossed around by strange doctrine (Heb. 13:9)
  • Enablement to obey the word of God
  • Empowerment to empty oneself to follow and to do the will of God
  • Enables us to present ourselves as an instrument of righteousness
  • Empowerment to live for Christ
  • Empowerment to become increasingly Christ like (2Cor. 3:18)
  • Empowerment to resist sin and its power
  • Empowerment to fulfill the law without being under the law
  • It empowers us, turning our weakness to strength
  • Enablement to walk worthy of the Lord; fruitful and increasing in the knowledge of God – loving God and others
  • Grace is the empowering presence of God, enabling us to be who H e created us to be, and to do what he has called us to do – James Ryle
  • We stay undefiled and did not fall short of God’s grace
  • Empowers us to endure in suffering; then perfects, establishes and settles us after we have endured
  • Empowerment through the word of God to avoid the corrupting influences of the world system

Through grace believers are restored – grace restores in us the desire and the power that God gives us to do His will; thus,

  • Restoration of a believer to a proper relationship with God
  • Through grace, God provides an advocate – Jesus
  • We have peace with God
  • We have access to God
  • The love of God is poured out into our heart by the Holy Spirit
  • We have the right and privilege to approach God with praise and request
  • Restoration of spiritual, physical and financial blessings on believers
  • We find help in time of need
  • It humbles us and then, exalts us (1Pet. 5:5)
  • Empowers believers to enjoy divine provisions and promises of God
  • Humanity is preserved – saving grace is available for the entire humanity (Jn. 3:16)

Through grace believers have hope

  • Hope of glorification before God
  • Hope of making heaven
  • Hope for eternal life
  • We rejoice in hope of the glory of God
  • We rejoice in tribulation which produces character and hope

Grace offers the opportunity to work toward perfection

 We are not perfect instantly but through necessity of sanctification, we get to that perfection. Point to note, Jesus had perfected us; however, we are not there yet; thus the reason for sanctification – doing our own part in the will of God. 

Benefits of Grace have become our entitlement given to man by God on the account of Jesus redemptive death on our behalf. Nobody can take it away from us; however, individual can reject it or throw it away. Are you in grace; are you in the will of God?

 Joshua said,

“Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth…, and if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Jos. 24:14-15)

The choice is yours.



The works of grace cannot be contained in a book; neither can one preacher give an account of the benefits it offers. But the bottom line is this; briefly put, grace offers us

  1. pardon and acquittal from the penalty of our previous sin/s
  2. liberation from the power of sin and its consequences
  3. declaration of believers as righteous
  4. a second chance
  5. a reunion with our Maker
  6. Beginning of a good relationship with God.
  7. preserving and preparing of believers to be with Christ in God’s kingdom

This I know that a well knowledgeable man of God who is spiritually sound, who is not after worldly gains should teach; also, this is the lesson that every believer needs to know and should know if what he/she professes is real.

Finally, Grace empowers us to experience a second chance

Situation with the church and society today is despicable. There is moral degeneration in our churches and society. Today’s modern civilized cities are like Sodom and Gomorrah; full of so many immoral and unethical behavior. The word ideology and technology has been abused; it is now being manipulated, misused and turned into a form of idolatry. Technology that is supposed to enhance humanity has turned to be instrument of unrighteousness; a form of idolatry. In order to understand grace and the liberty it offers, we must not be ignorant of these anomalies.

 If by grace we are saved; God is the provider of this grace through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through this given grace, believers are empowered by the Holy Spirit to live in a way that pleases God. (Rm. 3:21-23). God provided a second chancefor us so that we can build a godly character and have a good relationship with Him.

In order to experience His grace, let us remain under that grace, stay away from sin so that our second chance can become a reality; and for one more time, we may have a meaningful relationship with God again for eternity.

By Lawrence Abitogun

Related posts:

  1. Are Ministers not Misconstruing Christian Liberty and Grace in the Church? part 6 – Benefits of Grace
  2. Are Ministers not Misconstruing Christian Liberty and Grace in the Church? Part 1
  3. Are Ministers not Misconstruing Christian Liberty and Grace in the Church? Part 3
  4. Are Ministers not Misconstruing Christian Liberty and Grace in the Church? Part 4
  5. Are Ministers not Misconstruing Christian Liberty and Grace in the Church? Part 2

About the Author

Lawrence B. Abitogun, called by the special grace of the Almighty God through our Lord Jesus Christ; by the empowerment of the Holy Ghost, witnessing and preaching the gospel to the world, was born to a Christian parents at Uso, Ondo state, Nigeria. He received his elementary and secondary education in Nigeria from 1959-1971. He obtained a Bachelor degree in Fine Arts and a Master of Science in Industrial Arts at North Texas State University, Denton TX USA in 1979 and 1982 respectively.

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