Because of our sin, we can not stand before God. God’s Grace is the only thing that can allow a sinner to stand before Him. He must decide to be gracious and merciful to us. If He is not, there ain’t nothin’ we can do.
We can’t fix ourselves up, we can’t work off our sin, or remove it in any way. If God is not good, there is no reason to come to Him.
This is where most people’s understanding of Grace stops. I sin, therefore I need grace. Grace is seen as “the stuff you apply after sin.” It’s the surgery that removes the cancer.
This is indeed what grace can do, but it can do so much more. Observe:
Our High Priest, Jesus Christ, “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”
You can apply grace before sin, too!
Our time of need is when we face temptation. Christ faced temptation, just like us, yet was without sin. Why was He without sin? Grace!
We can come get grace before sin to keep us from sin, just as much as we can come for grace after we sin. When we only talk about the cleansing effects of grace, we undermine the preserving effects of grace.
Grace isn’t just the surgery that can remove the cancer; grace is also the way of life that prevents cancer in the first place!
Grace teaches us to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts so we can live, soberly, righteously and godly.
Our overemphasis on grace for after sin, rather than grace to prevent sin, shows that we’d rather ask for forgiveness than just do right to begin with. Few truly desire the grace to not sin; everyone desires sin that can be wiped away at no cost. What do we want grace for?