Mister Richardson's
Bible Doctrine Class


Chapter 17 - Common Grace

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. - Matthew 5:44-45

A. Introduction and Definition

  1. Common grace - The grace of God by which He gives people innumberable blessings that are not part of salvation.
  2. Saving grace - The grace of God that brings people to salvation; also known as "special grace".

B. Examples of Common Grace

  1. The physical realm - Matthew 5:44,45; Luke 6:35,36; Acts 14:16,17; Psalm 145:15, 16. Food, shelter, health, wealth.
  2. The intellectual realm - John 1:9; Romans 1:21; Acts 17:22,23, science, technology, discoveries, inventions.
  3. The moral realm - Romans 2:14,15; Luke 6:33. Morally good, but unsaved.
  4. The societal realm - Romans 13:4; 1 Tim 2:1,2. Government, families, schools.
  5. Common grace does not save people - temporal blessings and eternal blessings are not the same.

C. Reasons for common grace

  1. To redeem those who will be saved - God's purposes of election, 2 Peter 3:9,10.
  2. To demonstrate God's goodness and mercy - Luke 6:35; Psalm 145:9.
  3. To demonstrate God's justice - Romans 3:19.
  4. To demonstrate God's glory.

D. Our response to the doctrine of common grace

  1. Common grace does not mean that those who receive it will be saved - Philippians 3:18,19; Ephesians 2:3; James 4:4.
  2. Do not totally reject the good things that unbelievers do.
  3. We should be thankful to God.

1. What is the difference between saving grace and common grace?
2. Give examples of common grace in the following areas: physical, intellectual, moral, creative, societal, and religious.
3. List four reasons why God gives common grace.

Common grace, saving grace