There is a beautiful gem in Steps to Christ. On page 52, Mrs. White writes:¹
“Some seem to feel that they must be on probation, and must prove to the Lord that they are reformed, before they can claim His blessing. But they may claim the blessing of God even now. They must have His grace, the Spirit of Christ, to help their infirmities, or they cannot resist evil. Jesus loves to have us come to Him just as we are, sinful, helpless, dependent. We may come with all our weakness, our folly, our sinfulness, and fall at His feet in penitence. It is His glory to encircle us in the arms of His love and to bind up our wounds, to cleanse us from all impurity.”
Steps to Christ page 52
Along with the beautiful truth that our Saviour delights in receiving us just as we are in our weakness to bind up our wounds and to cleanse us from all impurities, we learn in this paragraph that grace is the Spirit of Christ. “They must have His grace, the Spirit of Christ, to help their infirmities, or they cannot resist evil.”
“The nature of the Spirit is a mystery” which man can never understand (AA 52.1), yet, notwithstanding the mysterious nature of the Spirit, we all know that the identity of the Spirit is Jesus Christ” (Lt66, April 10, 1894, par. 18). In this same way, we can know that the grace of God is the Spirit of Christ even though there is much about God’s grace that is unknowable and mysterious to us. As grace is the Spirit of Christ, and the Spirit of Christ is a mystery, so is grace a mystery, even though we may know something of it.
This understanding of grace is a beautiful revelation, bringing rich meaning to God’s word. For example, in the book of Hebrews we read,
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 15For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 16Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16
The word for “throne” is Strong’s G2632, “thronos,” and it means “a stately seat; by implication power or (concretely) a potentate.” Jesus, our mediating High Priest, tells us that if we, being evil, know how to give good gifts to our children, then how much more will our heavenly Father give us the Holy Spirit if we ask him (Luke 11:13). We have the privilege, through Christ, of boldly coming to the heavenly Potentate’s seat of eternal power and mercy, from whence all blessings flow, to receive “His grace, the Spirit of Christ.” He will give us the Spirit of His Son (Galatians 4:6, 7), the help we need to overcome every temptation to sin, but also to remember that we are loved with infinite love as God’s children. If we are bold to ask, we will receive the Spirit of Christ to help us in our times of need, to help our infirmities and to resist evil. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find [or “get” the Spirit of Christ] to help in time of need.”
We “must have His grace, the Spirit of Christ, to help [our] infirmities, or [we] cannot resist evil.” We must always fight against the temptation to think that we are not good enough to come to the throne of grace, or that we are not pure enough, or that God doesn’t love us, or that our shame and guilt exclude us from this precious privilege, for “Jesus loves to have us come to Him just as we are, sinful, helpless, dependent. We may come with all our weakness, our folly, our sinfulness, and fall at His feet in penitence. It is His glory to encircle us in the arms of His love and to bind up our wounds, to cleanse us from all impurity.”
Brethren and sisters, then let us come boldly to the throne of grace, to our kind and loving Father in heaven who has promised us the gift of His Son’s Spirit, and receive this most excellent, perfect, and infinitely powerful gift of grace to help in our time of need.