“For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourself; it is God’s gift—not from works so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
You’re probably familiar with the Christian hymn, Amazing Grace. You may remember singing the song in church as a child, or you may have heard bagpipe renditions of it in memorials. What do you think of when you hear the hymn? Does the melody soothe you? Have you taken the time to listen to the lyrics, or have you asked yourself what grace is and why is it amazing?
The original Greek word for “grace” in Ephesians 2:8 is χάρις or a free gift or favor.
What is this free gift?
This gift is salvation. (Rom. 5:9)
Why is this gift free? Who paid for it?
Jesus paid the cost of this gift. (Rom. 5:8)
What’s the cost?
The cost is death and God’s wrath. Because we’ve all sinned, we deserve death and God’s wrath in the final judgment. However, Jesus took our place in death and appeased God’s wrath on a cross. (Rom. 5:9; Mt. 27:46)
Isn’t it amazing how God could love us so much, He sent His only Son to the world to die for us and pay our debt that we could never pay? We cannot do any amount of good deeds to match Jesus’ perfect sacrifice and free gift for us. Salvation is better than being gifted a fine Las Vegas buffet meal, an all-expense-paid trip to Rome, a Tesla, or a million dollar prize to pay the bills and student loans. Why? Because salvation lasts beyond this life. Through faith in Jesus, you have new life! You have been made righteous!
So, the next time you feel defeated for not being “good enough,” remember that God has already accepted you through His Son. Jesus made it a done deal with His last words, “it is finished” (Jn. 19:30). We’re no longer under the law, but under grace (Rom 6:14). Our identity is no longer in our works or titles, but in the work of Jesus. And grace will continue on until it brings you home. As one verse from Amazing Grace states:
Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come. ’tis grace that brought me safe thus far,
and grace will lead us home.