Three Features of Free Grace

Three Features of Free Grace

In Miscellanies #191, Jonathan Edwards defines free grace as the kind of grace in which "the abundance of the benevolence of the giver is expressed, and gratitude in the receiver is obliged." Then he outlines three ways through which this kind of grace—which he also calls gospel grace—is realized (spacing and italics added):

Now I think these three things do constitute the freedom of grace. . .

(1) When the gift is to an offender, without satisfaction paid by him. . . .

(2) When 'tis given without retribution by way of condition, or without the receiver's profiting or pleasuring the giver. . . .

(3) When 'tis given without our worthiness; I mean without that excellency in our persons or actions that should move the giver to love and beneficence.

Tyler Kenney (@tylerkenney) is a former content strategist at Desiring God. He and his wife, Kristen, live in the Twin Cities.