So, what should our response be to those who are under grace, maybe even preaching grace, but are still living sinful lives?
1. Have mercy, because you could fall yourself. “Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted” (Galatians 6:1). “…Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12).
2. Continue to preach grace. I do not stop driving my car because someone had a car wreck. The abuse of grace is no reason to stop preaching grace. We should show grace even to those preachers who preach about grace and continue to sin. Just because someone preaches on grace does not mean that they fully understand it or are walking in it completely.
The power of sin is the Law.“The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law” (1 Corinthians 15:56). If someone warns you to watch out for “grace preachers” because they give people a “license to sin,” remind them that Paul said that the strength of sin is the Law. It is not the preaching of grace that empowers sinful behavior; rather, it is the preaching of the Law.
3. Don’t judge. As Christians we are called to, “Love the sinner, hate the sin.” Bob Stamps said, “God is not against you for your sins, he is for you against your sins.” Jesus advised us not to pull up weeds lest we pull up the wheat too (Matthew 13:29). Our job is not to judge who is a weed and who is wheat, our job is to continue to plant the seed of God’s Word in as many hearts as we can. Don’t judge those who break the Law—that is God’s job. “Do not speak evil of one another, brethren. He who speaks evil of a brother and judges his brother, speaks evil of the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is one Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy. Who are you to judge another?” (James 4:11-12).
4. Continue to love those who sin. Jesus had a reputation of being “a friend of sinners” and we are all sinners. Have you sinned in thought, word, or deed today? The truth is that everyone sins (1 Kings 8:46; Psalm 14:2-3; Psalm 51:5; Proverbs 21:4; Proverbs 24:9; Romans 3:10-12). Most people sin twenty times before they finish breakfast. But the good news is that the blood of Jesus washes away our sins.“…The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). The Greek word for “cleanse” is in the continuous present tense. This means that the blood of Jesus continually cleanses us from sin. It is not a one-time event, it is a continuous waterfall of forgiveness continuing to cleanse us every time we sin again. “Jesus took the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6).