Gift Or Purchase? There are four possible ways to obtain something you do not have.
- Steal it.
- Create it.
- Purchase it.
- Receive it as a gift.
As you know, stealing is not a legitimate way, and we have not yet learned how to create something from nothing. So that leaves us with paying for something or receiving it as a gift.
If you pay any amount, or trade anything in exchange for what you are receiving, then it is a purchase. For something to be a gift, you cannot pay anything to get it.
If someone said “I will give you my new car for only one dollar” they would be wrong. Paying only one dollar for a new car would be a great bargain, but it would not be a gift, but a purchase.
We need to understand this clearly. When the Bible says God has given us a gift, we need not — in fact, we cannot — pay for it in any way.
Trying to pay for a gift is a refusal to receive it as a gift.
EPHESIANS 2:8 NLT 8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
Salvation is a gift! (Salvation means more than going to Heaven when we die, but includes deliverance and safety from all that would harm us.)
Your salvation is a completely free gift! Jesus paid the full price, so you don’t have to pay anything for it! And you CANNOT earn it by anything you do.
The New Testament tells us that right standing with God is a gift (Romans 5:17, Romans 3:21-24). We receive this wonderful gift when we receive Jesus.
JOHN 1:17 ESV 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
Too many have not yet understood that the New Covenant is based on an entirely new approach. The Old Covenant (the law of Moses) required people to perform to gain God’s help and favor. It was based on our human performance. But the New Covenant is based on the performance of Jesus Christ, and our faith in Him.
If we have to be “good enough” for God’s blessing, then we are trying to pay for a gift. But it is impossible to pay for a gift! When we start paying for a gift we turn it into a purchase. And God does not have anything for sale! God will not allow anything so precious as His love to be bought by our good performance.
GALATIANS 5:4 NLT 4 For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God’s grace.
When we try to pay for God’s gift, we “fall from grace.” That means we are trying an inferior approach that will not work. It means we are still trying to earn God’s love and acceptance instead of receiving it as His gift to us.
SAY THIS: There is no possible way I can ever purchase, pay for, or achieve good standing with God. It is a gift I must accept by receiving Jesus Christ.