Bonhoeffer calls it the great danger to the church. Cheap Grace as he explains it is a kind of grace that is not foreign, instead of originating from the creator of all things. It is a grace that is common, ordinary, and mundane. It is a grace that is quite familiar because it comes from ourselves. And we bestow gifts upon ourselves merited or unmerited. Everyday is X-mas without Christ.
Grace loses its beauty when the object of grace or the Author of grace is forgotten. If God is a principle like “in case of fire break glass” then He to be looked to whenever a problem seems insurmountable or a goal is desired. All the good stuff, the things that make us awfully joyous of God, become programmatic things. Its’ beauty is lost in systems. Like gazing at art through a brick wall with holes in it.
I think Bonhoeffer is on to something when he says that cheap grace is grace without a discipleship. At the core of grace is a person. Which is why I say that cheap grace is Ephesians 2:8 that does not lead to Ephesians 2:10. By grace we are saved and that salvation is brought about by the gift (doron) of Jesus on the altar. If it were a principle salvation, or an ethical notion, a “when someone sneezes say God bless you” then grace bestowed on ourselves may be ok. But Jesus is not a notion, He is a person. Say it with me: Jesus is the Christ. He IS A PERSON NOT A CONCEPT. He is not a principle, he is the principle reason for our salvation. He is to be blessed forever more.For His act was not just physical instinct but actually planned before the foundation of the world.
Cheap grace at its core is a gratitude to a person-less salvation.
As we reflect upon who Jesus and look at what He did, we should gaze into His perfection in such a way that an incredible gratitude erupts into our hearts into our minds that our hands and feet would be shocked to not see themselves responding in a lifestyle of praise. Look at what makes you grateful daily. If a job, or a bill, or stuggles, or doing good works, can get in your way from communion with following Jesus then we have to reevaluate our perspective of grace.