What Is Hyper-Grace?

by Jack Wellman · Print Print · Email Email

What is hyper-grace? Is it something new? Is it biblically sound?


Anyone that’s been around toddlers very much knows they can get very hyper. Hyper means extremely excitable or extremely active. It could refer to someone being overstimulated, keyed up, obsessively concerned, and even fanatical or rabid, so the term hyper-grace refers to an extreme form of grace, and sadly, to the exclusion of other biblical doctrines. It seems that any time we overemphasize one doctrine, it is to the exclusion of other doctrines. One example is, we know we’re not saved by works, but we’re saved to do works (Eph 2:8-10). Now if we do works, we are not earning our salvation, but working out of our salvation. We know our works won’t be accepted by God, so we must think about God’s grace and mercy. Our devotion and love for Christ for His freeing us from the wrath of God should compel us to want to do things for Him, and these things are clearly revealed in the Bible (Matt 25:35-36, 28:18-20), so why is hyper-grace so dangerous? Why is it becoming so popular among professing Christians? That’s the reason I wrote this. I have concerns too, and I’ll show you what they are.


When hyper-grace is the main focus, then we take our eyes off of the need for daily repentance and confession of sin (1 John 1:9). We feel God’s grace is sufficient to cover all our sins, and it is, but sometimes people abuse that grace, and that is dangerous ground to walk on. You and I do not want to be presumptuous about God’s grace or take advantage of His great goodness. Most believers understand that it is “by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast” (Eph 2:8-9), so in the first place, we have no reason to boast or brag. The Apostle Paul said his desire was that none of them would be “puffed up in favor of one against another” (1 Cor 4:6), because not one of us have any reason to be. Paul asks, “What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it” (1 Cor 4:7)? None of us can boast about anything but Christ. We brought nothing to God but our sins and to Him we owe it all, so it is by grace, a free gift of God, that we have been saved. That’s why grace is so amazing, but when it’s abused, like with those who practice hyper-grace, it comes dangerously close to trampling on the blood of Jesus Christ.


Since many who believe in hyper-grace, or at least they live like they do, they do not really comprehend the grace of God. Since they believe that God’s grace covers all their sins; past, present, and future, they take advantage of that grace and sin all the more. This is just what Paul fought against. He asked, “What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means” (Rom 6:15)? Just because we are now under grace and not standing condemned before the law doesn’t mean we can break the law intentionally. When we break God’s laws, they can break us. That person might be saved, but consequences will result from their disobedience. We’ve been saved by grace and not works, but that doesn’t mean we can live the way we used to live. If someone believes they’ve been saved, but they live no differently than they used to, they may have never been regenerated in the first place. That’s why hyper-grace is so dangerous. It doesn’t worry about sin or repentance or overcoming sin or growing in holiness (or sanctification). Paul says that “sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace” (Rom 6:14), so if sin is still having dominion over someone, then that person may not be saved at all. To them, grace is simply a free pass to sin. Almost like how the Catholic Church sold indulgences hundreds of years ago. That was enough for Martin Luther to start the Great Reformation, although he had no idea of the impact that he would have.

The Whole Counsel

It’s good to be learning new things from Scripture, but when we do so at the exclusion of other essential doctrines, we don’t get the whole counsel of God’s Word (Acts 20:27). John the Baptist’s followers focused on baptism and repentance, which is good, but they didn’t really understand all of the gospel and what Jesus’ mission was and what He accomplished at Calvary. When Paul met some of John the Baptist’s disciples, “he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They said, “Into John’s baptism” (Acts 19:2-3). They only knew of repentance and baptism, but without the Spirit of God, they could not really know Christ. They needed the whole counsel of God. Repentance and baptism wasn’t enough…they needed Christ, and so do hyper-grace people! They need daily repentance. They too should keep short accounts with God in regards to sins. We must come to the Lord for a daily cleansing. People that believe in hyper-grace let a lot of sin accumulate by not worrying about their sin since they figure they’re under grace and not law, but they are taking advantage of Jesus’ shed blood and sinning willfully after knowing the truth. Someone who lives like that surely doesn’t have the whole counsel of God. We are to be holy as God is holy. Not sinless, but we should find ourselves sinning less over time.


Someone thought of an acronym for God’s grace. It is God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense (G.R.A.C.E.), so how can we ever abuse that grace for which Christ suffered so greatly? Why take lightly the supreme sacrifice in human history? We ought to be humbled and yielded to God after all He has done for us. Jesus came to give His life as a ransom for the many who would trust in Him (Mark 10:45), so why presume on Jesus’ ransoming His life for us? It is unthinkable. It is not the heart of a believer who is seeking Christ and His righteousness above all things (Matt 6:33). Maybe that person should read Matthew 7:21-23 and take it to heart. Jesus warned, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matt 7:21). He says, “On that day (Judgment Day) many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name” (Matt 7:22), so what does Jesus tell them? Congratulations and welcome to the kingdom? No! He says, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness” (Matt 7:23). Those who trample on the blood of Jesus Christ by sinning without guilt or believe in hyper-grace are living in lawlessness. And lawlessness is not a lifestyle lived by someone who understands grace and someone who has been saved by grace…unless it is someone who believes in hyper-grace (Matt 7:23). Workers of lawlessness, those who sin and presume on God’s grace, should fear this passage.

Here is some related reading for you: How Does Grace and Obedience Work Together?

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible : English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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