Did you know that the word “grace” is understood even by the unbelieving world? Well, it’s a shallow understanding but this word has been flogged to no end to mean everything. That’s where the very problem lies. When we come to Jesus with the same understanding the world has fed us with, we see our Lord through another one of those cliched meanings of this word. When we hear grace of Jesus being spoken, our flesh revolts because its been fed with this lie that grace is licentious, grace is freedom to live like the devil and other such rubbish. But the grace of the Bible is different, something that can take our entire life to understand and still not comprehend. Why? This is not the tricked down cheap stake cliched world understanding, but grace is the power of God to salvation. It’s not a choice between law and grace that we make to be saved. Grace is the only way Jesus saves man, period.
When Jude writes to the believers, he begins by starting to talk about the wonders of this salvation but later talks about the dangers of grace being portrayed differently. He stresses the importance of discerning how this subject is shown in a dirty perspective to mislead the flock of Christ. I reckon this sad situation is prevalent even in the churches of this day. The very mention of this word and the people are super attentive (read super cautious). It’s as if they’re treading on a land mine infested site. The point that Jude shows here is very important since it’s easier to believe the lie that I’m about to explain than the truth. And there’s very good reason for the devil to do this because grace is a realm where the devil is rendered powerless. His hands are literally tied and his devices rendered useless in a grace believer. Let me show you why.
Who are the certain men mentioned in this verse? For one, Jude says they’re already under eternal damnation for there’s no way they’ll be saved. It’s not that God doesn’t want them saved, it’s just that they’ll reject Jesus even to death. This is the message they propagate: they show the grace of God as lasciviousness. This means grace is given the title “cheap and dirty”. For someone to call grace as cheap, dirty, as a license for unbridled lust, they have to deny Jesus Christ. Why? Grace is a Person, Grace is Jesus Christ. Jude says such men have crept into the churches to portray the precious grace of Christ as cheap. They mislead the people away from receiving the grace which is the power of God. That’s why I explained in the first paragraph about the difference between the grace of the world and the grace of the gospel. Applying the same understanding of the world can lead to nothing but confusion.
The law is not the power of God, but grace is. When somebody receives the grace of Christ, they receive power and they start living by that power. You see, for such men as explained by Jude to conveniently wash away grace as an occasion to lust and sin takes the denial of Jesus. They cannot explain away grace as cheap without denying the Lord and that’s exactly what Jude emphasises here. Without the discernment of the Holy Spirit, it’s easier to dismiss the message of grace as evil and be easily convinced that the law is what God desires. Sadly, this is where believers miss out big time and end up in the law and sin consciousness. They believe to be sin conscious is being careful not to sin. To the contrary, the more sin conscious a believer is, the more is he going to sin and end up in that vicious cycle of self condemnation. While grace is seemingly portrayed as the license, it is the power of God that’s greater than the power of sin. All of man’s self righteous efforts couldn’t deliver him from the prison called sin. Until the time of grace, there was no way out of sin. Grace opened the way freely to what Jesus did on the cross that’s humanly impossible to comprehend.
Folks grace is Jesus. There is no grace apart from Jesus. We cannot preach grace without preaching Jesus. The only other way to preach grace is to show it in a cheap demeaning light, as merely a license completely denying Jesus and the cross. Grace reveals Jesus to us. We see why Jesus did what He did and why He blesses and blesses more abundantly even when we fail only when we understand grace. Remember when someone trashes grace as cheap, he/she has just denied our Lord Jesus Christ. To God, grace is serious business because that’s the only way to save a fallen man by a holy God. The devil knows that too well and he’ll raise up men within the church to show how cheap grace is to mislead the flock into condemnation. If that wasn’t enough, the preachers of grace are trashed too. This is why Jesus was put on the cross. This is why Paul was persecuted. This is why Stephen was stoned to death. This is why early churches were destroyed. This is why Martin Luther was persecuted and the spirit of anti-grace which is also anti-Christ is still prevalent. If you’re already in grace, rest in it. If you’re not, receive it. The grace of Christ is the power of God.