Talk:Divine grace

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I think the Christian Theology should explain "Divine Grace"-- (talk) 05:57, 3 December 2011 (UTC) By explaining that it is as follows. Anyone who thinks they are justified by their actions is a sinner. But GOD has "Divine Grace". Jesus,(who is GOD),died and rose again to justified anyone who will accept that GOD loves us so much, HE DIED FOR YOU!

Where is the definition?[edit]

I dare you to find a short, simple, practical definition of the word 'grace' on this page. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Biff alcatraz (talkcontribs) 21:46, 13 November 2010 (UTC)

I think the statement that it's the same thing as "luck" qualifies just fine.Greg Bard (talk) 00:13, 14 November 2010 (UTC)

Yeah, I linked here from Ram Dass, on which it states that he viewed his stroke-induced aphasia as "an act of grace", and neither the intro nor the Hindu section says anything about what that might mean in the context he's coming from. (talk) 16:19, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

As a Rabbi I can relate to this to some degree.. it seams grace is a technical definition for 'the blessings that come from above that are not in response to good deeds' its a necessary distinction being that, theologically blessings come for good acts whereas, these blessings stem from G-d's pure kindness. In kabbalah this distinction is common because its understood that blessings have different sources. blessings that come from good deeds come from the level of Gevurah or Judgement which is lower than the level of Chessed or Kindness which here is called G-ds Grace. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:42, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Non theist section[edit]

This section currently has a single statement:

From a nontheist, naturalist, and rationalist perspective, the concept of divine grace appears to be the same nonexistent concept as luck.

Could someone that has the POV of the contributor reword "nonexistent concept"? Whether or not a concept (such as luck) is valid or not, the concept does in fact exist. Did the contributor instead mean "invalid concept", "nonexistent entity" or "nonexistent phenomenon"? Whichever it is, the current choice of words does the POV no justice because it is nonsensical.

Regarding the citation by Arnold Kaufman, the statement I found in the cited article was that "...success was due to luck (or, perhaps, divine intervention-which is, on certain theological principles, a sign of Divine luck-sometimes called Divine Grace)". The citation does not appear to support the article's statement at all. He qualifies his assertion as applicable only using certain theological principles, and mentions that this presumably mistaken concept of "Divine Luck" is sometimes referred to as Divine Grace. This inserted parenthetical and qualified statement about something that is (justifiably or unjustifiably?) called by some "divine grace" is hardly presented as a blanket conclusion about divine grace itself, let alone one that the WP article represents as the unified view of all naturalists, rationalists and non theists. His general point instead seems to be that people attempt to absolve themselves and others of moral responsibility by using excuses of their lack of ability, and he mentions as part of this general thesis the cop out that some Christians resort to- that "it is in God's hands" and so on. Many Christians would vigorously agree it is a shirking of responsibility and a perversion of the concept of Grace to attempt to use it to absolve oneself or others from their moral responsibilities. Whether or not I am mistaken about this and Kaufman's article is instead performing a survey of naturalist, rationalist and non theist positions as part of a polemic against the concept of divine grace, I can imagine some reckless sources that might hazard such a broad assertion concerning all the naturalist, rationalist and non theistic points of view. Kaufman does not appear to be one of them, and this is not surprising because his concerns lay chiefly in the domain of political liberalism, not the domains of theology, ontology or cosmology. In any case, if he actually had the position, I have no problem with including it as a source. It would only be fair though to link it to an article (unwritten as of today) on Kaufmann that described what domain his notable expertise was actually in. The citation is below and should be restored if anyone can show how the citation supports the statement. Until them, the statement is noted with a citation needed.

<ref>''Ability'', Arnold S. Kaufman, The Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 60, No. 19</ref>

It seems to me that characterizing all "Non theist" views as being in unified agreement on any subject is on the face of it suspect. Regarding this particular question, one of the largest group of non theists are Buddhists, but there is also a concept of divine grace. Notes Buddhist scholar John Makransky about the remarkable similarities between Christian divine grace and analogous concepts in Buddhism:

For Buddhists, as for Augustine, there can be no freedom from bondage unless something transcendent intervenes. Only someone beyond such conditioning can point the way beyond it. Only someone who fully embodies that transcendent, unconditioned dimension of being could reveal it to others, and demonstrate the way for others to be released unto it. source

This intervention is unearned, is from a transcendent source, and is essential for salvation. Would the Buddhist call this luck? It hardly seems accurate.

What I am saying is that this nontheist section needs attention. I strongly believe that the POV that grace is really just another word for luck ought to be expressed, but it should be properly cited (perhaps from Dawkins or others of the secular atheist crowd?) and not go overboard and mischaracterize the positions of other non theists. J JMesserly (talk) 17:38, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Needs serious work[edit]

I didn't get past the Christian conceptions of grace section, but in that section there is a sentence written in the first person plural. Inappropriate for an encyclopedia article. Also in that section, the differences between how people attain this "divine grace," whatever it is, starts the section rather than being additional related info. Describing what Christians think divine grace is (if it's anything at all) should be at the top of the section, with info about how one might get it and why one would even need or want to get it should follow. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:02, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

I got farther. That whole non-theist section should just be dropped. This is supposed to be an article about divine grace. It should simply describe what divine grace is supposed to be. It does not need to explain opposing viewpoints. Too much of that is done in these wikipedia articles. As a parallel, imagine that the page on Christianity went into detail explaining the atheist perspective on Christianity. That would be totally out of place. Yeah. People who don't believe in gods don't believe in divine grace. Of course. No reason to put that in this article. Just describe what it is and leave debates to specific debate pages. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:23, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

OH YEAH! And there is already an article about Christian grace. Descriptions about differences between various christian thoughts about grace belong there. This article ought to simply point to that one. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:25, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

Needs a better qualified author[edit]

First let me express appreciation for the fact that anyone has attempted this. It is a difficult topic and what exists is a fair shot at it. But a difficult topic needs more insightful analysis.

First let me point out that 'grace' is not equivalent to 'luck'. Grace is obviously something akin to favor or at least favorable regard. It may appear to be a matter of luck whether one acquires [God's] grace. This seems to be very much aligned with the idea of The Elect. Did I miss that in the article?

But the unanswered questions here is: what was the religious rationale for identifying grace as a necessary ingredient in salvation? Presumably good behavior/works/etc would ordinarily merit salvation and presumably the same good behavior/works/faith etc would earn God's favor. Why introduce the element of luck (in getting 'the nod' instead of the person next to you who may have been even more meritorious)?. Is the implication that God has secret conditions or is just quixotic?

This idea is not related to Job's story. God tells Job (in so many words) that his ways are beyond the understanding of men after subjecting Job to a series of 'tests'. This might appear to be a similar inconstancy. But where God quite evidently subjects his followers to differing levels of test for reasons that are not evident, it is a different matter altogether to reward people in a random manner for their response to those tests.

It might be that grace is a rudimentary prescription for discouraging people from 'expecting' salvation in return for good works/faith/love etc. Clearly the spiritual error is in performing such acts for spiritual gain, a kind of spiritual materialism. Such acts should be performed with selflessness and humility rather than as performance for a spiritual payoff. But surely that concept should be better defined than leaving it up to what appears to be luck.

Apologies if my non-theist expressions here are crude but they are not intended to be rude. -- (talk) 23:20, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Is a correction needed[edit]

Is this statement correct? "Grace in this context is something that is God-given, made possible only by Jesus Christ and none other." My question would be did not God have grace in the old testament before Jesus?--User:Warrior777 (talk) 09:02, 6 November 2012 (UTC)

I imagine the answer is yes, because Christ, as part of the Trinity, existed with God the Father and the Holy Spirit from the beginning. --Bermicourt (talk) 12:41, 9 February 2013 (UTC)

Missing a reference[edit]

James Ryle is quoted, but there is no reference. I found a web page where he wrote almost the exact words attributed to him here. Here is the link: Waltezell (talk) 01:14, 5 January 2014 (UTC)