Saved By Grace
(Eph 2:8-10 NKJV) For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
I am revisiting these timeless verses because they are so terribly misunderstood and every time I teach on them the penny drops for someone and they cry "I never knew that!"
say quite clearly that:
We are saved by grace
Grace operates through faith.
This faith does not come from ourselves - it is a gift.
It is not through works so people cannot be boastful about their spiritual achievements or earning salvation.
We are not our own workmanship "self-made men" rather we are God's workmanship "Christ-made men".
We are created in Christ Jesus.
This new creation is expected to good works. The new good nature will do new and good deeds.
We don't choose these good deeds; God has prepared them beforehand that we should walk in them.
First, grace reaches us because God gives us the faith to receive His grace. This freely given grace saves us. Not our works. We do not earn our salvation, it was purchased for us on the cross.
If we could earn our salvation by good works then Jesus need not have died - God could have sent a good motivator to make us work harder. Instead He sent a ransom for sin. All the motivation and hard work cannot kill off our sin natures or get rid of the penalty that we deserve. The sacrifice means we start with a new nature and a clean slate. We receive this forgiveness - we don't earn it. We do not contribute to our salvation at all.
That's the first half of the story! Once we are saved then we must get moving! We are not saved to "fall asleep in the light" we are saved "for good works which God has prepared beforehand..". The Christian life is not without good works! Good works do not get us into heaven but they determine the reward and inheritance we get ! The prodigal son was loved By "all I have is yours.." applied to the elder brother!
The one who goes astray may yet be saved but they "waste their inheritance.." The world robs us of eternal rewards! (1 Corinthians 3:10-15 NKJV) According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
So we are saved by grace through faith - that gets us into heaven "yet as through fire". Our works - built on the foundation of Christ Jesus and done in purity and faithfulness, then bring us eternal happiness. I hope that helps you in your walk with God.
Lord I thank you
for Your wonderful grace toward me in the cross of Jesus Christ and for
the faith to receive it. Lord may I not be slack about this grace, may
I not despise it or presume on it. No Lord let me work unceasingly for
You and Your glory with "precious stones' O Lord. May I take Your
grace and soar up on high, may I build on the start You have given me
Lord Jesus. O Lord let me walk in ALL the works that You have prepared
beforehand for me to do, despite my weakness, folly and sin rescue enough
Lord for me to have a reward on that Day. Oh Yes Lord, make my life shine,
just a little, for You. Amen.
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