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Now although everyone knows what is meant by Beauty, Goodness, and Truth, it is impossible to visualize them as absolute values. We can visualize a beautiful thing, but not beauty; a good man, but not goodness; a true fact, but not truth. - Phillips, J. B., Your God is too Small, MacMillan Publishing Co., 866 Third Ave, New York, NY 10022,  p. 72

Gradations of Grace in Christendom
06/28/2018

We can, of course, say the same thing as above about grace.

In its development of theology during the last two millennia, Christianity has generated about a handful of doctrines with different levels of grace for God.

G0 - The first level of grace in God is not much grace at all. God is seen as a God of justice to whose will we must submit and obey. At some point we must become perfect in our obedience and performance. Almost no Christian believes this, or will admit it.

G1 - The second level of grace is that God forgives sins of weakness indefinitely as long as we are striving, which demonstrates his grace, but he does not forgive deliberately considered or planned sins.

G2 - The third level of grace is that God will even forgive deliberately planned sins, when the person sincerely repents, but we must continue to strive for perfection of behavior. He cannot ever forgive alienating the Holy Spirit.

G3 - The fourth level of grace has God forgiving anything and everything when the person fully acknowledges that he was, is, and will be a sinner, and then accepts the substitution of Christ's merits for his own. God's grace continues as long as the person somehow stays on the path of sanctification, growing more righteous in his behavior.

G5 - The fifth level of grace has God not giving up on anyone, and having a plan to ultimately save everyone. Every human being has merit and unlimited potential merit. Merit is not the issue. It is our sin, our wrong concept of the nature and character of God and our perverse clinging to it, that must be eliminated, and no sham bookkeeping entry of righteousness or pretension of justification will do.

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