Sun, Nov 19, 2017

Free Grace -- Forever Indebted

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Big Idea: God’s love is on display in His gift of salvation by grace through faith. We cannot do anything to earn or justify this amazing grace. Instead, as God’s masterpiece we join Him in His work which He has prepared ahead of time for us to enter into as a way of life.  

I. God’s grace on display

A. The “for” is building on verse 7
B. It is by grace that you are saved by faith.

C. Clarification: two “nots”

D. It’s a gift.

E. No one can brag.

II. We are His masterpiece.

A. He worked/created us…

B. ...In Christ...

C. ...For works which were prepared ahead of time.

D. Purpose: so we could walk in them.

III. Application

A. Receive the gift. Open this amazing gift.

B. Let go of trying to earn love you already have.

C. Figure out what God has line up for you.

D. Settle into doing what God has for you as a way of life.

Discussion Questions:

1) How would you explain how salvation actually works to someone who had never heard about God’s plan for salvation?

2) On a scale from to 1 to 10 (1 = completely indifferent, 10 = the perfect people pleaser), how driven are you to earn approval through doing? How much of a people pleaser are you?
Is being a 1 on the scale a good thing? Have you seen many people who are completely indifferent to others’ opinions who are also highly compassionate?

3) What is the best gift you have ever received from a person?

4) Does trying to earn a gift ruin the act of giving? Have you ever given something to someone very dear to you, only to have them insist on paying you for it? How did that make you feel? Have you ever thought about how God might look at our efforts to earn His free gift? Could we grieve the heart of God this way?

5) Is it easy for you to believe that you are a masterpiece of God’s creative genius? Why or why not? How might that change the way you see yourself?

6) How do you figure out the work that God has prepared ahead of time for you? If you can’t earn God’s approval or love, why would He prepare in advance work for us to do?

7) How many Christians do you think have a clear sense of what they are here to do? Do you have a clear sense of what you are here to do? Do you know what your spiritual gifts are and are you using them?

8) What one step of obedience will you take this week in response to God’s word? Think of one person in your life who needs to know about God’s plan for salvation. Will you tell them about it? Who will hold you accountable, and share in the joy of what God does through your act of obedience?

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