Please read and complete the following lesson.
(We provide the Bible passage, but feel free to use your own Bible if you want to look up the verses. A free Bible is also available online from Bible Hub at https://biblehub.com/esv/ )
God’s word says in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” So salvation is gift from God! It is a gift that saves us from the penalties of sin (death) and brings forgiveness and peace.
What do you need to do to earn a gift? Nothing. You just receive it.
This is contrary to what many people believe is true. Without God’s gift, humans have tried other things to earn salvation.
THINGS WHICH CANNOT SAVE US
Religion does not save us.
Religion is man’s effort to get to God. According to Acts 26:5, what religion did Paul practice before following Christ? “According to the strictest party of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee.” Pharisees were the religious leaders of Judaism. Later the apostle Paul considered his religion as loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ.
In Philippians 3:4-8 Paul writes: “Although I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.”
Good works do not save us.
Good works are man’s effort to be accepted by God. But the apostle Paul, who taught that religion does not save us, also teaches that good works will not save us either. Speaking of salvation, Paul says in Ephesians 2:8-9 that it is “not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
HOW WE ARE SAVED
We are saved by grace.
The word “grace” means a gift, something we do not deserve and cannot earn. Salvation is the free gift of God. Ephesians 2:8 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.”
We are saved through faith.
Faith is how we extend our empty hands out to receive the grace (gift) of God. Again, Ephesians 2:8 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith.”
According to the Bible, faith implies a personal confidence that Jesus died for us in order to save us and forgive our sins. We acknowledge that we are NOT saved by religion or good works, but by the grace of God, which we receive by faith.
Do you believe that you are saved?
How do you know?
According to Romans 6:23 above, what were you saved from?
Answers from the text in red above. 1. just receive it, 2. religion, 3. Pharisee, 4. works, 5. grace, 6. grace, 7. faith
Seeking Assurance of Your Salvation?
YOU CAN HAVE CONFIDENCE THAT GOD WILL HEAR YOUR PRAYER
In the Bible, 1 John 5:14, the Apostle John writes this to you: “This is the confidence that we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us — whatever we ask — we know that we have what we asked of him.” The Scriptures tell us plainly that God is not willing that anyone should be lost, but that all would come to salvation through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. This means God will hear and grant your honest prayer of repentence and belief in Jesus.
If you would like to have a life-giving relationship with Jesus Christ, simply pray this prayer and mean it in your heart. He is alive and ready to listen. Here’s what you could say to him:
“Jesus, I’m sorry for the way I’ve treated you. Please forgive me. I reject my life of rebellion against God. I believe you are the Son of God who came to this earth to save me from a life that I have lived apart from You. Please save me, and give me a new heart that is holy and acceptable. I believe that I am now in You, and You are now in me by your Spirit. Change me from the inside out. I mean this. Though I will surely fail sometimes, I believe that You will never fail me. Thank you. Amen.”
If you prayed this prayer, please answer this one question:
Thank you for spending time with us in Bible Study Lesson 1. Please proceed on to Essentials Lesson 2 which is linked below.