New Life in Christ

Key Verse: “By grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,”
—Ephesians 2:8, English Standard Version

Selected Scripture:
Ephesians 2:1-10

AS THIS CHAPTER commences, Paul informs his readers that prior to their conversions they were under Divine condemnation because of their sinful thoughts, words, and deeds. Additionally, they willingly disobeyed God and were under the influence of the Devil.—Eph. 2:1-3

A great change came upon Paul’s hearers because of God’s love and mercy towards them. “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—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”—vss. 4-6, ESV

This miraculous transforming act of grace will be a theme of eternal revelation throughout all ages. (vs. 7) All intelligent beings will understand and appreciate the great cost to both the Heavenly Father and his Son to effect the restoration of the human family back to earthly perfection, as well as the exalted future heavenly station for the saints who follow the Lord “whithersoever he goeth.”—Rev. 14:4

Our Key Verse negates the idea that mankind can attain salvation by their own efforts. God’s grace or unmerited favor has been bestowed upon believers who through faith in Christ’s ransom sacrifice have been granted sonship. “Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”—Eph. 2:9,10

Thus, if the Christian’s standing with God was attained as a result of his own works, there would probably be some room for boasting. However, that would mean the death of Christ was unnecessary and contradictory to scriptural testimony. “As by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.”—Rom. 5:12

As New Creatures in Christ, believers should progress in the doing of good works as an outgrowth of their new life in Christ. Through the influence of the Holy Spirit, God works in us “both to will and to do of his good pleasure. (Phil. 2:13) This would result in a character that produces fruitage.

“Beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity [love]. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (II Pet. 1:5-8) The persistent cultivation of these essential virtues will insure that we will be more than overcomers and inherit the kingdom of Christ. “Give diligence to make your calling and election sure: … For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”—vss.10, 11

How wonderful it will be for faithful believers to be received with loving embrace by the Master, to assist him in the great work of restoring the human family back into favor with the Heavenly Father.—Matt. 25:23

Dawn Bible Students Association
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