Grace not works Rev Con Despinidic 2nd July 2017
In our Journey through the book of Acts we have seen that the Disciples Paul and Barnabas stayed in Antioch for three years, encouraging, teaching and establishing the church. Their faith and commitment is a great encouragement to me and I am sure to every missionary that followed them.
One observation that I SHARED WITH YOU WAS: That it did not take long for difficulties to appear-
1 Certain people came down from Judea to Antioch and were teaching the believers: “Unless you are circumcised, according to the custom taught by Moses, you cannot be saved.” 2 This brought Paul and Barnabas into sharp dispute and debate with them. So Paul and Barnabas were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question.
The apostle Paul was not impressed, he had strived all his life, prior to his conversion to the Christian faith to fulfil all the requirement of the Law- God had shown him that he couldn’t, even though the OT Law was good, all it could do was to point to something greater and better, a new covenant one of Grace, love and freedom. This is seen in the wonderful Gospel of the Lord Jesus.
The author of Hebrews puts it this way.
By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.
Paul’s argument in Romans 5 makes this clear.
6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
This is God’s work; this is GRACE for we are not saved by works but by Grace.
We are not saved by works; Grace is God’s unmerited favour: For God is not under any obligation t man. The very thing that separates man from God is dealt with through the Lord Jesus- this is God the Father’s grace in action.
YOU ARE LOVED
YOU ARE FORGIVEN
YOU ARE RECONCILED WITH GOD THE FATHER
1. God’s love is undeserved
2. We do not have to work for it
3. All Spiritual blessings are a gift from God
This is why Grace is so important; this is why the Apostle went to the church in Jerusalem. This is why we are here today.