While sermon prepping for today, I opened up Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s book “The Cost of Discipleship”. As I was thumbing through it looking for a quote I needed, I looked through all my highlights and remembered just how challenging this book is. One of my favorite chapters in the whole book is the first one called “Costly Grace”. In this chapter he calls “Cheap Grace the deadly enemy of our Church” and defines cheap grace and costly grace as follows:
Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living incarnate.
Costly grace is the treasure hidden in the field; for the sake of it a man will gladly go and sell all that he has. It is the pearl of great price to buy which the merchant will sell all his goods. It is the kingly rule of Christ, of whose sake a man will pluck out the eye which causes him to stumble; it is the call of Jesus Christ at which the disciple leaves his nets and follows him.
Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock. (44-45)
If you have yet to read this Christian classic do yourself a favor and go pick it up on amazon today.