Those who have received grace extend grace to others. It sounds good. But it’s not always true. The person whose meal was paid for by a stranger doesn’t always pass it on. The person who merges on a busy highway doesn’t always let the next person in. The last immigrant wants to close the door on the next immigrant. Sometimes we want grace for ourselves but not for others.

But a true grasp of the gospel of grace changes not only our eternal status but also our present practice. When we understand grace as a gift we neither sought nor deserved, we cannot look down on anyone else. And we can never lose hope for anyone else. No one can be beyond hope of the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead.

My guest on this episode of The Gospel Coalition Podcast is Stephen Um. He’s the senior minister of Citylife Presbyterian Church in Boston and a Council member of The Gospel Coalition. He is also the writer and presenter of Gospel Shaped Mercy, a small-group video and book study published by TGC with The Good Book Company. It’s based on point five—the doing of justice and mercy—from TGC’s five points of gospel-centered ministry. I asked him about the relationship between common and eternal good, and how the gospel empowers churches that seek the salvation of souls and also the relief of poverty, hunger, and injustice.

Listen to this episode of The Gospel Coalition Podcast and check out other episodes in the series Why We Need Theological Vision.