In this world, we have to earn everything we get. No one gets a free ride. We have to earn a living. We have to earn respect. We even have to earn someone's love. The harder we work, the more we get and the better the quality of the reward. Failure is not an option if we want to get ahead. That is the way of this world, but it is not the way of the next world. It is not the way of heaven. Fortunately, with God, things are a little different.
God is holy, almighty and perfect. We can't earn the blessings that come from God. He offers eternal life and we can't get it by hard work. There isn't anything we can do or any service we can perform that He can't have without us. We can't do anything that is worth His mercy. We can't act good enough or think enough good thoughts to earn His love. Some of you are getting frustrated now, thinking that there must be some good thing we can do that hits the mark. There isn't. The thing that makes God so amazing is that His love and His blessings are free. He gives them freely and abundantly. This is called grace.
Grace describes God's love to those who are profoundly undeserving. Salvation, eternal life is free to us as a result of His grace. Ephesians 2:8 and 9 tells us that we have been saved (from sin and death) by grace, through faith. It is not something that we have accomplished, it is a fee gift of God. It is not given to those who work for it. It cannot be earned. There is no one who is good enough. Romans 3:23 says that no one lives up to God's glory. We have all fallen short.
Romans 3:21-24 says that righteousness (morally upright; without guilt or sin) comes from God. Righteousness comes through faith in Jesus Christ. Salvation comes from God as a free gift (grace) through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ. His sacrifice on the cross paid the price for our sin - something that we could never do. His grace is greater than all of our sin - greater than the total of all the sin in the world.
It may be hard to believe that anything is absolutely free. Believe God's word. Jesus paid our way so that we can have free access to our Heavenly Father. That is God's love for us. We are free from the guilt of sin and free to enter into a holy relationship with Him.
Grace has been defined as God's Riches at Christ's Expense.