Friday, August 17, 2012

Greasy Grace Trap

              Have you ever heard the term “Greasy Grace”? Some of you may have, some of you may be reading this and wondering what the heck am I talking about. I once had a preacher talk about this term, Greasy Grace, and at first did not understand it either. But as I have grown, as I have allowed God’s grace to work in me, I have come to understand what exactly he was referring to. God’s grace is given to all of us who believe. I don’t always understand the concept of grace because it is sometimes too high for me to grasp. But I know that by “grace I have been saved through faith, and it is the gift of God.” (Eph. 2:8) I know that His grace is merciful and longsuffering, but there have been times when I have taken His grace, His goodness for granted and fallen into the “Greasy Grace” pit.
                Titus 2:11 says, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.” God’s grace was seen by us all, believers and unbelievers, as Jesus Christ hung upon the cross for our sins. His grace was manifested to the generations through His Holy Bible, His word. He has given us grace as a gift. Grace does something to all men who believe, it works in us God’s will for our lives. But the grace of God can be taken for granted, I know, I have done it before.
                Titus 2:12, “teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.” God’s grace teaches us that we are to live a holy life before Him. But, for some of us who have been caught in the “Greasy Grace” trap, we fail to live the way God’s grace intends for us.
                So what exactly am I referring to when I say, “Greasy Grace”, and how do you know you have fallen into the grease trap? Greasy grace is a term used to describe those who believe in Jesus Christ, but have yet to deny the works of the flesh, the sins in their lives. It is an attitude that says, “I can go sin it up because God’s grace covers me.” Pastor Chuck Smith stated, “I'm saved by grace. Does that mean that I can live any old way? No. What does the grace of God teach me? That I should deny ungodliness, that I should deny the worldly lust, that we should live soberly, and righteously, and godly. God's grace teaches me that. It doesn't teach me that I can go out and live any old way I want and the grace of God will cover for me, but it teaches me that I am to live a righteous life.
                When we are caught in the greasy grace trap, we will find ourselves doing things our way instead of God’s way. God’s grace is to teach us how to live a life worthy of Him. We can live anyway we want, God does not force His will upon anyone. But be wary if you are finding yourself in the “greasy grace” trap. It does not lead to a very happy place, nor does it lead to God. It is a trap, a trap that some of us have unfortunately fallen into, me included. But God, through His grace and mercy, delivered me from that pit of grease and has cleansed me, teaching me to live the way that He desires for me to live.
                So how do we get out of this pit of grease? How do we start living the life that God desires for us? We follow the steps that Paul has laid out for us in verse 12. We begin by “denying ungodliness”. Denying ungodliness means that I will refuse to allow any lack of respect for God to enter my life. God’s grace will bring me to a place where I will deny the lack of reverence one may have for God. The thoughts, deeds and works that those who practice such things will not sit well with me, it will cause me to reject them. (Not the person, but the deeds, thoughts, and works)
                Secondly, I will begin to have a teachable spirit. I will accept sound doctrine, even when it hurts to hear it. When Paul stated that the grace of God is “teaching us” he was referring to a teaching that trains us, chastises us, and causes us to learn- however we need to learn. God’s grace is good and perfect; it will always teach us, train us, chastise us and reprove us. But, if we are under “greasy grace” and not God’s perfect Grace, there will not be a whole lot of chastisement going on. We will be perfectly happy to do what we want, when we want and how we want without any regard to God. We will say to ourselves, “Oh just this one time, God will forgive me.” That is “greasy grace.”
                Next we will begin to seek to live soberly, which means that we will begin to exercise self restraint, we will allow God’s grace to govern all our passions and desires, and allow Him to conform us to the mind of Christ. We will begin to live righteously. We will be agreeable to the laws and the commands that God has laid forth for us, knowing that when we do sin, we have grace, but we will strive to live our lives before God as one of His children. We will also begin to lead godly lives, our walks will reflect God, and the manner of life that we are living will be to God and God alone. We will deny the desires and passions of this earthly tent and begin to seek what is above. We will seek to please God alone, in everything, and through everything we do, say, or think.   
                Grace is given to us when we confess that Jesus Christ is our Savior, when we confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus Christ is Lord. But many times, I have taken for granted the grace of God, and done my own thing instead of seeking to do what He desires. When I did this, I fell into the “Greasy Grace” trap, and found myself on a downward spiral. We do not live our lives for ourselves, we are not here on this earth for ourselves; we are here because the Grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. You are not your own, you do not belong to yourself- you belong to God if you believe in Him. Our lives should be a reflection of the grace which you have been given. We must walk in this world, but we must deny the lusts, the temptations, the desires and the passions that come in front of us every day. We must chose- God’s Grace or Greasy Grace. God’s grace leads to righteousness, greasy grace leads to a slippery slope of ungodliness.
                Let us not get stuck in the grease trap, let us hold fast to the grace that has been given to us and begin to live soberly, righteously, for God, to God and because of God. In Jesus Name, Amen and Amen.