Does grace abound?

“For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings” – Hosea 6:6

“Law without grace is legalism and grace without law is lawlessness” – Ralph Messer

A friend recently asked for our thoughts on the following comment/question:

“A person says they love God, but lives a party life. They believe God is faithful, but are worldly. Does grace abound?”

The term “party lifestyle” can take on many different meanings to different people but the crux of this question seems to be more about our responsibilities as Christians to follow Gods rules. The Bible clearly teaches that grace is available for all who seek it and that God prefers mercy over sacrifice (or even punishment). Can man continuously sin and expect Gods grace and mercy to be available?

I am reminded of the story in Exodus of the Pharaoh who enslaved the Israelites. I’ve always found it interesting and yet a bit peculiar that God would cause Pharaoh to be disobedient through the hardening of his heart and then punish his disobedience with a plague; not just once, but 4 times!

I am also reminded of a good friend of mine who once told me that we are commanded to pray for our enemies but we are not commanded to pray for Gods enemies–who are Gods enemies? More importantly, how does one become the enemy of God?

Satan is obviously one of Gods enemies. It would be silly to even consider praying for his salvation. He tried to stage a coup in heaven and now works to defeat Gods plans for humanity–and he has definitely earned the title “enemy of God.” Did Pharaoh also earn this title? Did the one who enslaved all of Israel become Gods enemy? Mercy is available for anyone who asks but Pharaoh was unable to ask because God hardened his heart. Perhaps Pharaoh too earned the title “enemy of God.”

Now back to the original question, God requires us to live a life that is pleasing to him but he also knows that we will make mistakes and so he makes his grace and mercy available to us. So long as you don’t make yourself an enemy of God, grace and mercy will always be available to you.

Yes, grace does abound!

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