Common Sense, Common Grace
|Some lack the grace of Common
Sense. Others want to ignore common sense
and get by on special grace. No, common grace is fulfilled by special
grace. Do not
call on Special Grace when you have refused first to use the Common
Grace given to
everyone by common sense.
Do not call on special grace to save you if you wonít first use your common grace. Donít ask directly for top level grace when you havenít first exhausted the lower level grace. To go to a second level floor, you must first go through the first floor. The first floor is common sense from common grace. Or say, the lower court is run by common grace, and only after you have observed the laws of common grace, should you appeal to the higher court for a ruling of special grace. That means donít frustrate the natural processes of God. Try common sense first. Common grace is before Special Divine grace. Try your common sense before you start bothering God for special graces.
Maybe it should be put this way: When your child is ill, go to a medical doctor. That is common sense from common grace. Then pray for the child and have others pray for the child. For having fulfilled the first level of common grace, going to the doctor, you go to the next and higher level of asking for special and divine grace. Nature (common sense from common grace) is fulfilled by divine grace (praying == asking for the Higher Power.) To be a true Christian effort, acts of nature must be fulfilled by acts of grace. There is a lower physical power and a higher spiritual power and grace is not full until the two are one: united, complete and full in grace. This is like a marriage , a natural unity, the two types of grace must be united to produce. They are meant to form a unity, but not just a unity, a redeeming unity.. Is that not a good marriage? A redeeming unity. So also is the union of special grace and common grace.
You cannot ask for more grace until you have used first the grace you have at hand. The scripture says God will give more grace, (James 4:6) but this is only after you have used the means of grace you have at hand. So use the common grace you have first, and this means applying common sense. It is a strategy of sense though common grace. When all means of grace are used, common or otherwise, then ask for more grace and divine grace. After all the means of common grace are applied, then you ask for more grace or special grace,
The defect in common sense is that it is partially determined by its cultural as well as class and national milieu. So watch out that common sense does not fool you into warped actions for Exodus 23: 2 says: ďThou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil.Ē
Dr. James MacLeod may be contacted through the Neill Macaulay Foundation.