2 Corinthians 6:1 - Don't Receive God's Grace In Vain!
2 Cor 6:1 (KJV) We then, as workers together with him, beseech
you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.
2 Cor 6:1 (NCV) We are workers together with God, so we beg
you: Do not let the grace that you received from God be for nothing.
2 Cor 6:1 (Dorece) As we are workers together with Him, we urge
you also that ye be not fruitless in receiving the grace of God.
2 Cor 6:1 (Gibbs) As you labor with Jesus be careful not to let
your blessings from God be wasted.
God's grace is received in vain--
1. When it is neglected. Persistent inattention may deafen the
heart to God's voice. A guidebook for a journey is of little value to
a man who blunders along without studying it or following its
2. When it is perverted by using it as a cloak for sin (Rom.
6:1, 15). The unscriptural argument that God's grace abrogates His
law (see on Rom. 3:31) is advanced by some as an excuse for doing as
they please instead of obeying God (see Heb. 10:29).
3. When it is adulterated with human ideas and methods. Men
receive God's grace in vain when they seek to earn merit before God by a
punctilious legalism (Rom. 6:14, 15; Gal. 2:21; 5:4; Eph 2:8, 9).
4. When it is received only by the intellect and is not taken
into the life; when it does not purify the heart and lead to full and
eager obedience to the Word of God. Comprehension without
It is sometimes necessary to prime a pump in order to start it
operating, but the priming is not an end in itself. In the same way, God
imparts grace to justify the repentant sinner, but only in order to
place him in a position where he can receive continuing grace to help
him live above sin. [SDA Commentary]
The "grace of God" here means evidently the gracious offer of
reconciliation and pardon. And the sense is, "We entreat you not to neglect or
slight this offer of pardon, so as to lose the benefit of it, and be
lost... simply to hear of the plan of salvation or the offers of mercy,
will no more save a sinner than to hear of medicine will save the
sick. It must be embraced and applied, or it will be in vain. (Barnes'
How could the Corinthian believers toss aside God's message
("receive God's grace in vain")? Perhaps they were doubting Paul and his
words, confused by the false teachers who taught a different message.
The people heard God's message, but did not let it affect what they
said and did. How often does God's message reach you in vain? [Life
Trying to do things without God's help is vain (Ps. 127:1).
[Holman's Bible Dictionary]
To live for oneself (see 5:15) is one way to do this. [NIV SB]
They should not receive the grace of God in vain. With humble,
devoted reverence they should labor on the right hand and on the left,
consecrating to God their entire service and all their capabilities. 6T296-8
The unfaithful steward did not enrich himself with his master's
goods; he merely wasted them. He let idleness take the place of
sincere, wholehearted labor. He was unfaithful in the appropriation of
his lord's goods. Unfaithful steward, do you not see that you will
lose your soul if you do not co-operate with God and make the most of
your talents for the Master? 6T296-8
The principle of cooperation is vital to personal spiritual
accomplishment and to success in Christian service. God does not dispense with
man's voluntary cooperation (DA 535). Man's capacity for good is
completely dependent upon the measure of his cooperation with the divine
(cf. John 5:19, 30; DA 297). Christian ministers and workers are not
to attempt to labor in their own strength or wisdom, and God does
not leave them to their own devices, or to their own resources. This
cooperation between Christ and His ambassadors is to be so close and
continuous that "they are enabled to do the deeds of Omnipotence" (DA 827).
Christ is more than an observer, simply looking on; He is an active
partner in all that they do (Phil. 2:12, 13; cf. Heb. 1:14). [SDA
The gospel of Christ includes much more than the forgiveness of
past sins; it envisions, as well, a transformation of character whose
goal is a life into which sin does not enter (see on Rom. 6:5-16; 2
Cor. 1:22; 3:18). The initial reception of God's grace, which brings
justification, is to be followed by a continuous reception of grace, which
produces sanctification. [SDA Commentary]
Believers can resist grace. Unless we respond to God in willing
obedience we will experience no present transformation. God doesn't work
in us against our will. [Victor Bible Reader's Companion]
It is very important that we continue daily in meditating upon
God and His Word. His word indeed is a guide unto our path and a
lamp unto our feet. Listen for that "small voice" as He speaks to
our hearts. I believe this could be the message to us so as not to
"receive the grace of God in vain." Praise the Lord! [Dorece Harney]