"The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works" (Ps.145:9 KJV)
The blessings of the Holy Spirit's common, ordinary grace
are extended to the Christian,
as well as to the non-Christian,
being "those general blessings which God imparts to all men
without any distinction as He sees fit."1
Upon the non-Christian, God showers natural, general blessings--
air to breathe and water to drink,
as well as blessings in particular.2
He provides family, fruitful seasons, success
and a degree of pleasure in this world.3
God enables the non-Christian to live in the enjoyment of His creation
prospering from his God-given abilities,
sharing in the natural, universal benefits,
as given by the Creator, for all His creatures.
In common grace God arouses deeds of kindness
and relative goodness in mankind.4
He often restrains the extent and degree of sin
thwarting evil intentions and contrived wickedness.
He brings about a rational fervor for civil order,
outward morality and decency toward others.
Because of common grace, the non-Christian is deceived,
taking pride in being looked after by "the man upstairs,"
reasoning that a God who counts him worthy to receive earthly benefits
would surely not deny him the bliss of heaven.
While it is possible to resist God's common grace
and despise the riches of His goodness,
that common, natural grace, without God's irresistible special grace
will accompany that individual to the threshold of everlasting torment.5
1. Louis Berkhof, Summary of Christian Doctrine (1938:reprint, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1977), 121.
3. Acts 14:17.
4. Luke 6:33.
5. John 3:16; Rom.6:23; Eph.2:8,9; John 5:14; Acts 3:19.