Updated: Jul 9, 2020
Please feel free to use whichever parts of this are beneficial. I have tried to create a flow to this in a desire to focus our eyes and our spirits on the incredible depth and width of God’s grace and love for you/us. There are three sections to the study and some simple notes/questions to go along with the verses chosen. This can be a personal study you do over the course of weeks, one you do with your wife, kids family and discuss together. The Gospel is a powerful message of which each one of us needs to be reminded of each day.
This is by no means meant to be an exhaustive study, rather a simple time of reflection on the Good News of the Gospel. That Gospel being this "while we were still sinners Christ died for us"
SECTION 1 —
Romans 3:23-24 - for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
Question 1 Why does Paul tell us that all fall short?
Question 2 What does it mean to be justified?
Question 3 What does “grace as a gift” mean?
Romans 5:1-2 - “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand, and we rejoice in hope of the Glory of God.”
Question 1 Paul says we have been justified by faith and now have peace with God. What does it mean to have peace with God?
Question 2 Paul says we have obtained access by faith into grace…”which we now stand” what does it mean when Paul says we “stand in grace”
Question 3 Paul now says that we have “hope of the glory of God” in Romans 3 we just read we “fall short of the glory of God” What has changed? Why can we now have hope of God’s glory?
Ephesians 2:1, 4-5 “and you were dead in your trespasses and sins” “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ — by grace you have been saved”
Question 1 Paul says here in Ephesians 2 that we were dead in our trespasses and sins…what can dead people do?
Question 2 Paul says in verse 4-5 that God made us alive, how did God make us alive? Follow up question — he also says why…why did God make us alive?
Question 3 there are two words to describe God mercy and his love…what are they? Follow up do these verses tell us there is anything we do to earn this rich mercy and great love?
In this first section the goal is to gain a greater understanding that we are sinners yes, dead in our sin yes….but God loved us so much that in His great love He sent Christ to make us alive. This takes place all because of Him and His mercy, grace and love and has nothing to do with us and what good or bad things we have done.
SECTION 2 —
Now if you are anything like me you will at times know that you have been saved, and know that God loves you. But, because you struggle to be perfect, in fact I struggle to just not be a jerk sometimes, I find myself because I know my heart wondering if perhaps God’s love for me has diminished because I have acted in a way that is not easy to love…you know? This is what this section is about. First section is all about nothing we did to earn the love, grace and mercy of God. This is going to focus on the steadfast and permanency of God’s love for us.
Lamentations 3:22 - “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end”
Question 1 - here we see two very clear statements made about God’s love…what are they?
Question 2 - If they never cease and never come to an end then is there anything you can do to change the love God has towards you?
Ephesians 3:17-19 - “so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God”
Question 1 - this is a HUGE chunk filled with incredible promises! We will focus on just a few though. Pauls says that we can be “rooted and grounded in love” considering Lamentations promise of a never ceasing love from God, and that in section one we learned His love has nothing to do with our actions…what does it now mean when we read we can be rooted and grounded in love?
Question 2 - Paul says “may have strength to comprehend…breadth, length, height, depth of Christ’s love” Paul is encouraging you/us to consider, comprehend just how vast the love of Christ is for you/us…take a moment to consider this truth. Write down what comes to mind.
Question 3 - extra credit read Ephesians 3:14-21 and dwell on the statement “according to the power at work within us” What power is this? Why does this power lead Paul to write “to Him be glory”
1 John 4:16 - “So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this love is perfected with us, that we may have confidence for the day of judgement, because as He is so also are we in the world.”
Question 1 - John says “so we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us” After reading the above verses and answering those questions I pray you know the love God has for you! John encourages you/us to abide in this love. What does that mean? What does it mean to abide in God’s love for you?
Question 2 - John says “so that you may have confidence” Why can/should we have confidence as we abide in the love of God?
Extra credit - read verse 19 of chapter 4. John says “we love because He first loved us” Hold this thought in your mind as it will be our launching point to our last section.
After going through section two I pray you have an appreciation for the incredible love God has for you expressed through His Son Christ and see that this love is without end, vast and without measure. That this truth leads you to have confidence in your standing in Christ. Loved, covered in His redemptive work and that there is incredible power at work in you! The salvation of your soul!
As I stated at the beginning of this section it is easy to see our faults, to see all the times we mess up, in fact the Bible tells us that we have accuser, satan, the enemy. As we walk as Christians, we sin and satan loves to accuse us. But, I hope that as you went through section two you now understand that God’s love will not end, will not change. You can stand confident of this “no in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our lord”
SECTION 3 —
What now? What do with do with this? We are always told to be nice, be good, do these things, don’t do these other things. If God’s love never ends and His love and grace towards me are without end then why should I not just do whatever I want? “what then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!” Romans 6:15
Remember I told you to hold onto verse 19 of chapter 4 in John’s first letter? “we love because He first loved us” Paul says it another way in 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 “for the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for Him who for their sake died and was raised.”
2 Corinthians 9:8 - “and God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work”
Question 1 - according to this verse is there any time when God’s grace isn’t sufficient?
Question 2 - Paul says here that all grace is given to us…but he says that there is a purpose or a response to this grace and love which should and can spring up from us…what is it?
Galatians 2:20 “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me”
Question 1 How does Paul say he lives this life?
Question 2 In context of our study what does in mean to live by faith in Son of God?
Ephesians 4:1-7 “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, 3 eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. 7 But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ's gift”
Question 1 - Consider Pauls statements in 2 Corinthians 5:14 “love of Christ controls us” and here is Ephesians 4 “a prisoner of the Lord” What did this great love Paul experienced do to him? How did it change him?
Question 2 - Consider 1 John 4:19 “we love because He first loved us” with “urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called”
Question 3 - Paul gives us a list of things which he connects with “walking in a manner worthy of your calling” Considering Galatians 2:20 how might we be able to do these things? In who’s strength would we do these things?
Question 4 - Paul ends this section with “but grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift” considering Christ’s gift of salvation through His sacrifice how might that help you to be humble, gentle, patient, loving and eager to maintain unity?
Titus 2:11-14 “11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, 12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, 13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.”
Question 1 - What has grace done?
Question 2 - What are some things by grace we can/should have to be true of us?
Question 3 - What should grace make us zealous for?
As you consider all these things, all three sections together. Section 1 that despite being a sinner lost in our sins God loved us so much that in His great love He sent Christ to make us alive. This takes place all because of Him and His mercy, grace and love and has nothing to do with us and what good or bad things we have done. Section 2 that there is no end to this love which He has loved us with and that this section leads you to have confidence in your standing in Christ. Loved, covered in His redemptive work and that there is incredible power at work in you! The salvation of your soul! Section 3 answers the question “since I am saved by grace and nothing I do can take me out of the love of God then why not just do whatever I want?” Because grace has appeared and it has trained us, trained us that God’s love can and should compel us to love others because He first loved us.
As you think on these sections our last passage is a long one.
Look at Ephesians 5:1-2, 15-21 and consider all three of these sections what has been learned and then consider 5:1-2 as it relates to your life as a believer saved by the lavish love of Christ and how that love can motivate and move you to walk in love.
Walk in the confidence of the great love with which you have been loved. So that you might be zealous for good works.
Lord Bless church!