Grace to Save

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Complete these for me...
If it sounds too good to be true... it is.
We make money the old fashion way, we ... earn it.
There's no such thing as a free ... lunch.
No pain no…gain.
God helps those who ... help themselves
Everything in our nation until recently, has taught us that you get what you earn in life. There is no free lunch and that when you make your bed you lie in it.
This was called the great American Work Ethic. This is a good thing for any nation, but God does not work that way. So our work ethic the thing that has made our nation the greatest on the planet, works against us when it come to God.
We cannot work our way into heaven. Look at this verse is Psalms
Psalm 145:8 NIV
8 The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.
God is a gracious or grace filled God. We don’t deserve it nor can we earn it, He just like to be gracious to us.
You really cannot understand the Christian Life unless you understand GRACE. When you understand it, you will feel closer to God. You will love him more and want to obey and trust him more.

What is grace?

That’s not a simple or easy question to answer. Like looking at a multi-faceted diamond.
One def - God’s love in action… God giving me what I need not what I deserve...
Mercy - When God doesn’t give me what I deserve.
Grace - When God gives me what I don’t deserve.
Too many Christians will say they are saved by grace but they live like they are saved or maintain it by their works. You do not get to heaven by doing good. Some Christians act like God is an un-pleasable parent so you live your life trying to please him so that he will love you. He already does.
I want us to understand GRACE tonight.
Tonight we will look at saving grace.

G - God’s gift to me.

Romans 3:24 NCV
24 and all need to be made right with God by his grace, which is a free gift. They need to be made free from sin through Jesus Christ.
Romans 6:23 NLT
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
It’s a free gift.
If you asked 100 people on the sidewalk, How do you get to heaven? They will say some variation of My good has to out weigh my bad… the flaw in this is it’s not true. story of the righteous judge… let me off because my life has out weighed this one bad thing...
Salvation is a free gift. circle it. You do not deserve it and never will. God gave it to you.
Every other religion in the world is based on doing something. Christianity is the only one where God does it for you. No other religion deals with your guilt, Christianity does. God forgives it.
You do not go to heaven based on what you do, but on what Jesus did.

R - Receive it by faith.

Ephesians 2:8–9 NLT
8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.
Your faith is the key here. You just have to believe it… trust it. If I offered you a $100 bill… if you believed me, you would get up and come get it. If you sat there, you did not have the faith...
Paul is saying that Salvation is a gift we receive by faith. You can’t work for it, you just accept it.
Romans 4:16 NCV
16 So people receive God’s promise by having faith. This happens so the promise can be a free gift. Then all of Abraham’s children can have that promise. It is not only for those who live under the law of Moses but for anyone who lives with faith like that of Abraham, who is the father of us all.
Salvation is not based on your performance, it’s based on God’s promise. You don’t get into heaven because you deserve it… you don’t. You get into heaven because of His gift.
ILL - Mephibosheth
He was the son of King Saul’s son Jonathan… David’s best friend.
Remember the story of David and Saul. David was going to be the king. Saul was the current king and Saul was jealous of David. So most of David's life, Saul was trying to kill him. He chased him all over the countryside. David spent most of his time hiding from Saul, avoiding being killed out of jealousy. But David never retaliated. In fact, he became best friends with King Saul's son, named Jonathan. They made a secret covenant that if either of them ever died they would take care of each other's family. Later on both Saul and Jonathan were killed in battle. And David became the king. All of Saul's relatives immediately were in fear thinking, "David, who King Saul has been trying to kill all of his life, is now in control and he's going to kill all of us." They all tried to escape and hide.
One of them was the son of Jonathan named Mephibosheth. As the nurse was carrying the young boy out in the escape, she dropped him. His legs were broken and he became a paraplegic. So here was this young disabled boy living in fear, frightened for his life that the man who was now king would retaliate against him.
One day David says, "Is there anybody still alive in Saul's household that I can show kindness to?" (Grace) They said, "Yes, there is. There's one little kid. He's a disabled little boy named Mephibosheth. He cannot walk." David said, "Bring him to me." You can imagine the fear in Mephibosheth's heart. Here's the king, inviting him to the court and he's thinking, "I'm going to be killed, executed. It's over. It's done." But to his surprise when he arrived, David said, "I'm going to take you in, Mephibosheth, and make you a part of my family. I want you to live here in the palace for the rest of my life. I'm going to pay all your bills. I'm going to meet all your needs. You are to sit at my table each night and dine with me and I'm going to treat you just like you're one of my own sons." That's grace
The Bible says that God comes to us and we're broken, we're disabled in areas of our lives, crippled in some areas. Our emotions are crippled or other things are happening in our lives and God comes and says, "I'm going to bring you into My family. I want you to sit at My table. I'm going to treat you like royalty, one of My own, simply out of My grace."
Prodigal Son - that’s grace. That boy deserved to be punished… to be condemned, but he wasn’t … that’s grace.

A - Available to everyone.

God doesn’t play favorites. It doesn’t matter what you have done or where you came from. His grace is for you.
Romans 4:16 NCV
16 So people receive God’s promise by having faith. This happens so the promise can be a free gift. Then all of Abraham’s children can have that promise. It is not only for those who live under the law of Moses but for anyone who lives with faith like that of Abraham, who is the father of us all.
Who are these people who live under the Law of Moses? The Jews. The Jewish people were given the Law of Moses. Moses was their leader. They were given the ways of God to do the right thing before the rest of us were given them.
Have you ever thought about why the Jews were called God's chosen people? Does God love them more than He loves the rest of us? No. They were chosen for a purpose. They were chosen to spread the message to everybody else, to tell the world that there is one true God. That's what they were chosen for. They were kind of like the missionaries to the rest of us.
Now God has taken that task and given it to the church which includes Jews, Gentiles and everybody else who put their faith in Christ. God says it's available to anybody who opens up their heart in faith. "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." Circle "everyone". There are no quotas in heaven. It doesn't say only really good people will be saved if they call on the name of the Lord, really religious people, really smart people. No. It says anybody. Anybody who calls on the name of the Lord, who has faith in the grace of God will be saved.
The sad thing is that even though many people know that God offers His grace, His unconditional gift to us, they still try to work their way to heaven. They think that something in their lives is making them good enough that they don't need to receive God's gift of grace through Christ.
You may have done some really good things in life, but if you think they're going to get you into heaven, forget it. Heaven is perfect and you're not. The only way you're going to get in is by receiving God's gift to you, receiving it by faith which is available to every person.

C - Grace comes through Christ.

John 1:17 NIV
17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
Why is Jesus the only way to get to heaven? He is the only one who paid your ticket. He paid the price of admission to heaven.
1 Peter 3:18 NLT
18 Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit.
The law tells us when we do wrong. Grace says, Yes you blew it but here is how to get back on trac… let’s go.
Romans 5:15 NCV
15 But God’s free gift is not like Adam’s sin. Many people died because of the sin of that one man. But the grace from God was much greater; many people received God’s gift of life by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ.
In the Bible, the favorite description for someone who has grace, who's accepted God's grace, the favorite description for a believer, is the term "in Christ." That phrase, "in Christ", is used over 120 times in the New Testament. It refers to somebody who has found salvation through the grace of God, being in Christ.
ILL - card in a bible
When you are in Christ, God only sees Jesus around you. He doesn’t see your sins because Jesus took care of them.
Galatians 2:21 NLT
21 I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die.
If you could get to heaven on your own, you would have and Jesus would not have come to earth and died for your sins.
It's a free gift. You just accept it in faith. Grace is all that God does for me because of what Jesus Christ did for me on the cross.
Someone said grace is God’s Riches at Christ’s Expense.

E - It is extended throughout eternity.

Romans 6:23 NLT
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
The results of God’s Grace goes on and on and on… He gives us ETERNAL life. Grace is the gift that keeps on giving…
Grace gives you eternal life in heaven.
Have you ever thought about what heaven will be like?
Place of reunion
Place of reward. We are rewarded for the character that we developed and the way we served other people here on earth. Matthew 5:12
Place where we are reassigned to do new work that we like to do based on our on how God has gifted us.
Place where we are released from all of the pain, sickness, sadness suffering, depression, loneliness of this world.
It’s going to be a wonderful palce.
There is one catch… you have to accept it. If you receive a gift but don’t open it, it’s worthless. Jesus makes this gift of grace available to everyone and it’s customized to your life.
You may be thinking that you have done so much that God will not forgive you… that’s sad and it’s wrong. Jesus says come...
story of the woman who was caught in adultery… in John 8
John 8:1–11 NLT
1 Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, 2 but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. 3 As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd. 4 “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?” 6 They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. 7 They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” 8 Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust. 9 When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. 10 Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?” 11 “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
If you think that by coming to God, you will be condemned and cast out, you are wrong. Jesus says… come.
Isaiah 30:18 NLT
18 So the Lord must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the Lord is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for his help.
He is waiting for you to come so he can show you his love, his forgiveness, his grace and mercy...
He made two profound statements to the woman.
I don’t condemn you...
Now stop doing it… God and sin no more. Let me help you change. He doesn’t just say go and keep on doing what is destroying your life. He will help you change.
Salvation PRayer
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