There is a new wave of doctrinal error rampaging the church.
Those who peddle this erroneous message are called ‘hyper grace’ teachers/preachers and like Jude, “I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ“.
Jude 1:3-4 NKJV
This fight for the faith has been waging since time immemorial. It’s not new.
Unfortunately, most of those that I’ve seen on the side of true Grace have not been well equipped to wage this war. One major reason is that they don’t even know the actual ideology of the people they are contending with so they assume that such and such is what this ‘perverse-grace’ is about (when it isn’t) and then focus their energy and arguments on what isn’t. We end up beating about the bush when we don’t know what the real bone of contention is.
For this reason, the first thing I am going to do is highlight the fundamental beliefs of this new craze that is ravaging the Church so that we can adequately confront this error head on.
These are the four cardinals of this new perverse-grace movement:
- Once you’re saved, you are forever saved. No sin can rob you of your salvation except the sin of rejecting Jesus as your Lord and Savior.
- Once you got born again, you were forgiven your past, present AND future sins. That means that if you commit new sins after you get born again, you don’t need to ASK for forgiveness for those new sins because all your sins (past, present AND future) have been forgiven in advance.
- When you sin (even though they ‘claim’ they advise against sin) they say you should not feel any form of guilt because you have already been forgiven all sins in advance. They teach that the Holy Spirit doesn’t convict the believer of sin (that it is the world He convicts of sin) so if you feel guilt for any post-salvation sin, it is not the Holy Spirit causing you to feel guilt, it is your weak conscience at work. According to this perverse ideology of grace, you feel ‘guilt’ because you are sin-conscious.
- They believe we are saved by faith alone, that is, faith without works. Hence, they say, the Christian life is not about ‘behavior modification’ but about ‘life transformation’.
Because of this ideology, when they hear someone tell them that ‘repentance from sin’ is necessary for believers who sin, they cry foul – that it is legalism. And when they are told to endeavor to live above reproach, they accuse us of trying to earn salvation by our ‘works’. Thus, to them, ‘behavior modification’ is legalism, so they live with reckless abandon on account of this false-grace.
This about sums up the belief system of this perverted grace movement on the rampage. To take the bull by the horns, I would need to do one post at a time so as not to make the read cumbersome.
Having said that, let me wrap this up with at least one point.
I know that the proponents of this perverse grace message don’t tell people to go on living in sin, but they cannot argue that their message does not give people license to sin. You might want to argue that since I know that they don’t tell people to live in sin, why should I still think that their message gives license to sin? After all, don’t people already sin without a license?
To answer that, we must understand two concepts;
the concept of a license and
the concept of sin.
Please note that I said concept not definition.
You would agree with me that you can’t run a beer parlour without a license, even if you wanted to. The law will use the resources at its disposal to ensure that you don’t. So, the long arm of the law serves as a barrier stopping you from achieving your goal. But with a license, the barrier is removed and nothing stops you from running your beer parlor or tavern.
With this description, we can confidently say that by concept, a license is the removal of a legal barrier that once prevented you from doing something.
That is the concept behind the word, license. Now, let’s conceptualize sin. Before we do, remember sin has an alluring nature, it’s called “the pleasures of sin that last but for a moment”. That means, sin is something that naturally tugs at our appetite as humans.
To illustrate the concept of sin, imagine there’s a herd of goats, each protected by an electric collar. And right across from them is a hungry lion who has been instructed to eat anything he so desires except this goatherd. Let’s say the lion is the believer, the goatherd – diverse sins and the electric collars are the judgement or consequence of sin. With the collars in place, eating a goat will come at a price – electrocution.
Now here’s the bone of contention; this new philosophy that’s commonly called “hyper-grace” says although the lion is instructed not to eat a single goat, nevertheless, because of the sacrifice of Jesus of the Cross, the electric collar on the goats have been removed so that if the lion ever decides to eat a goat against the wishes of its Owner, it won’t get electrocuted again.
Can someone please explain to me how you can remove the electric collars from the goatherd and say you have not given the lion license to devour the goats? (Remember, a license gives you access by removing barriers). You can’t just draw a line in the sand and say to the lion, “don’t cross”, and “don’t eat”, but if you do “no worries” and expect the lion to comply!
That’s not all!
To worsen matters, this false grace movement not only teaches that there are no more consequences when a Christian indulges in the “pleasures of sin” but they also teach that God takes no offense when Christians sin because all He can see is the sinless Christ in us. What can be more perverse than that?
Listen, if there are no consequences for sins, there would be no incentives to walk away from it. And if there is no risk of hurting feelings and breaching fellowship with His Benevolent Majesty, there would be motivation to refrain from indulging in sin. Because as long as there is something in sin that tugs at a man’s appetite, he will gravitate toward it, and even more so if there is no danger of gaining judgment and no risk of losing fellowship with God. If you live in that delusion, then what stops you from indulging in sin with reckless abandon?
Consequences define boundaries. Like we saw in the analogy of the lion and the goat, as long as the lion sees no consequences in his actions, he feels no restrain. You can’t say it’s illegal to steal and say even if you steal the law will do nothing.
Where this people get it wrong is that they think Christ came to make sin inconsequential, but nothing could be further from the truth. Christ did not come to absolve sin of its consequences, He came to absolve us of our sins and with the same stroke, deliver us from the consequences of our sins. This simply means that sin still has consequences but in the sacrifice of Christ we have the antidote. Every sin we commit endangers us, but if we come boldly to the throne of grace we will always find mercy and grace to help.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches…