Grace has an edge. God is not present simply as rounded curves and encompassing acceptance. Grace is neither the absence of judgment nor infinite compassion. Rather, grace is the sharpness of God engaging human conditions. It is God’s presence as strength in struggle, as denier of evil, as opponent of exploitation. Grace has an edge, a well-tempered edge like a surgeon’s scalpel, an edge used for healing, an edge which cuts to make healing possible. — Thomas A. Langford, Reflections on Grace, p. 29
Langford, who died in 2000, was a United Methodist theologian and former provost at Duke University as well as a head of the divinity school there. This book is based on a manuscript for a “theology of grace” that he was working on during the last years of his life.