Grace alone, faith alone, Christ alone. Part 1: Text: Ephesians 2:8-10
“For by grace you were saved through faith; and it does not come from you, it is a gift from God, not by works, so that no one should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has prepared in advance, so that we may practice them.
When it comes to our eternal destiny, doctrine is everything. When we die, what we believe will be fixed and unchangeable for eternity (read Luke 16:19-31). Many people believe in historical facts about Jesus Christ, but will spend eternity separated from Him (Matthew 7:21-23, 22:14) because they never truly gave their life to His Lordship (Matthew 18 : 3). Our company believes that God welcomes many different religions and beliefs. Friends, nothing could be further from the truth. This belief represents a “broad road to hell” mindset. For the next few weeks, we want to let the Word of God speak clearly and unambiguously regarding the doctrine of salvation.
In the first three chapters of his letter to the church in Ephesus, the apostle Paul writes to glorify God for the salvation of those in Ephesus, as well as the head of the church, the Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1 :22-23). In chapter 2:1-10, Paul gives a “before and after” summary of their lives. In Ephesians 2:8 he says that God originated saving faith, not sinful human beings.
My friends, no one wakes up one day and just decides to be a Christian! Saving faith can only happen when God extends his grace to an unworthy and helpless soul who seeks the absolute truth about his Creator. Once understood, this person places their faith in the promises of the Word of God which speaks of Jesus Christ. Try looking at it this way; The grace of God is contained in a locked room. But when a person repents of his sins and lays down his life through helpless faith in Jesus Christ, it is through THAT FAITH that represents the “key” that unlocks the grace of God to forgive him his sins, secure his destiny. eternal life in Heaven (Ephesians 2:4-7), and guide them through life in this sin-cursed world as they follow Him and live in submission to the teaching of His Word.
Not only do we not initiate our salvation, but we cannot work on it either. To work means to deserve or to earn. You cannot win a gift. You can only receive it with gratitude, or refuse it. Furthermore, verse 9 tells us that heaven will be empty of all who thought they were “good enough” to be there. There will be no pride or boasting in Heaven.
Finally, verse 10 of our text says that we are not preparing to work for God and serve him; God does, in Jesus Christ. The works and services that true Christians no longer do are done to try to earn them a place in heaven. They now know that it is futile. Their work and service for God now flows from within them as an expression of gratitude for what Jesus Christ did by dying on the cross in his place for their helpless souls (Mark 16:16-17) . Even though the result of their Christian service is ridicule and mockery, which is certainly more apparent today, they stand firm and rejoice, knowing that they are blessed from Heaven (Matthew 5:11-12), and It’s all that matters !
Friends, we are all helpless sinners; we cannot save ourselves. Our prayer for you is that if you think otherwise, please read this text again and ask the Spirit of God to plant in you a heart to seek the absolute truth of His Word. Next week’s text will be Galatians 2:20-21.
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