‘For by grace are ye saved’
No doubt most people who have been to Church have at some point or other heard this phrase, or read it in the numerous collections of literature that are in circulation. The passage itself comes from the book of Ephesians attributed to Paul; the apostle of Jesus Christ, once called Saul, who persecuted the body of Christ, only to discover his persecutions were directed at the head.
However, this is not about the exact meaning of the phrase above in context, but instead about a particular meaning that has been ascribed to it by the Church. This might immediately seem to be offensive but it is not. Firstly, because the Church happily admits to having various sources of truth, which include the uniquely inspired written word of God, namely the Bible as well many other writings, which are often said to carry the authority of the Church which Christ instituted. Unfortunately for them this does not always work in their favour, when expounding a passage from the uniquely inspired written word of God. They may say that they have spent hours in prayer and God gave them the meaning, as they studied their commentaries or spoke to learned teachers; however, when it comes to this simple phrase as with all the passages in the uniquely inspired word of God; it is of paramount importance not to ‘add’ or ‘subtract’ from them. It is with this in mind that I ask a simple question. Why is it then that the Church has added a word between ‘by’ and ‘grace’.
WHAT? What word?
The word is ‘SACRAMENTAL’.
Therefore the passage now reads, ‘For by sacramental grace are ye saved.’
What does grace really mean?
It is easy enough to understand the meaning of the word ‘grace’ in its context.
If you return to (verses 1-7), the meaning is wonderfully laid out.
And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, by (grace ye are saved; ) and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
(This passage which preceeds verse 8, wonderfully explains the meaning of this grace.)
The desperate state of our lives prior to God’s quickening us together with Christ.
(a) Dead in trespasses and sins
(b) Walking according to the course of this world
© According to the prince of the power of this air. (satan)
(d) Sharing in the spirit of the children of disobedience.
(e) Living in the lusts of our flesh
(f) Fulfilling the desires of the flesh and the mind
(g) By nature, children of wrath.
(h) Dead in our sins (repeat)
This grace of God results in us being;
(a) raised up together (with Jesus)
(b) made us sit in heavenly places. (in Christ Jesus)
So that in future ages; God might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His KINDNESS towards us through CHRIST JESUS
In the study of the uniquely inspired word of GOD, it is quite clear that the description of the GRACE of God has been declared. In order to make this word include ‘the seven sacraments’, is tantamount to ‘taking away,’ or ‘adding to,’ what has been uniquely spoken by God and any such *equivocation of the passage will eventually result in deception similar to that worked upon Eve in the garden of Eden. Never forget that Satan parades as a teacher of righteousness and enjoys adding distortion to the clear instructions of God.
To add to the completed work of GOD in Christ Jesus is to open a Pandoras box of devil’s doctrines, so it is far better to let Scripture interpret Scripture and not add, or take away. In effect doing damage to what has been given to us by the Holy Spirit.
*Equivocation, also known as amphibology, is classified as both a formal and informal fallacy. It is the misleading use of a word with more than one meaning (by glossing over which meaning is intended at a particular time).