Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Reflection - "This grace was given to us before the beginning of time"

Source (book): "Faithful to the end", Question 3, Page 29.
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012


This grace was given to us before the beginning of time
PHOTO: 'This grace was given to us before the beginning of time' (2 Timothy 1:9)
Posted by Karen Holland, kholland.trust@gmail.com on 19 June 2009
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https://scriptureart.wordpress.com/page/2/



Consider "This grace was given to us before the beginning of time" (2 Timothy 1:9). What does this mean for you personally? Are there any attitudes and habits of yours that need correction after knowing that God's choice of you predates history? How should you response to this truth about God's grace? Write down any commitment that you would like to make to God.


"This grace was given to us before the beginning of time". What does this mean for you personally?
2 Timothy 1:9, (New International Version) [2]
He has saved us and called us to a holy life - not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, [2]


Why do we need a Covenant of Grace? [3]
The Covenant of Works was the pre-fall covenant made between God and Adam in which God condescended (consent) to reward Adam with blessing and eternal life upon obedience to the covenant stipulation (condition) - "not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil". On the flip side, in the event of Adam's disobedience, God promised that "in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die" (Genesis 2:17). We also argued that the death that was a result of Adam's failure to fulfill the Covenant of Works was both physical (Adam became mortal and subject to death) and spiritual (Adam lost communion with God and entered into a state of sin and spiritual death).


Adam and Eve sinned and were being driven from Eden
PHOTO: Adam and Eve sinned and were being driven from Eden
The death that was a result of Adam's failure to fulfill the Covenant of Works was both physical (Adam became mortal and subject to death) and spiritual (Adam lost communion with God and entered into a state of sin and spiritual death).
Adam and Eve being driven from Eden due to original sin, portrayed by Gustave Dor.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-aEjdePceYto/VQQINbXj8WI/AAAAAAAAfhY/GTo-h-yGtLA/s1600/Adamandevesin.jpg
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d2/Adamandevesin.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_Christianity



God is not obligated to initiate a second covenant with mankind. Man's failure to live up to the terms of the Covenant of Works placed man under the yoke of condemnation. God would be perfectly justified to leave things as they were, but he enters into a new covenant; a covenant of grace.

The Covenant of Grace is a covenant made between God and sinful man with Jesus Christ serving as the mediator of this covenant. In this covenant, God promises to freely and graciously give sinful mankind salvation and eternal life through Jesus Christ. The only thing God requires in return is faith in him for salvation. This faith is the faith that trusts in the person and work of Jesus Christ for their salvation and not in their own efforts. It is called a Covenant of Grace because the salvation found in it is not earned or merited.



The covenant of works (The Mosaic Covenant) to The Covenant of Grace

PHOTO: The covenant of works (The Mosaic Covenant) to The Covenant of Grace
God initiate a second covenant (The Covenant of Grace) with mankind after man's failure to live up to the terms of the Covenant of Works. The new and better law came by Jesus Christ, that of grace and truth. By this law we are justified, by this law comes spiritual transformation.
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--bjlh9EbAx8/VRuI4NT0thI/AAAAAAAAfsI/xLYmJDeGBsc/s1600/covenant-of-grace-chart.png
http://s8wministries.org/images/illustrations-covenant/covenant-of-grace-chart.png
http://www.s8wministries.org/blog-post.php?id=111&mid=



In the midst of Adam's failure  a covenant of grace signals God's gracious provision for our sin problem.

This is the promise of the Covenant of Grace  that God will do for man what man could not do for himself.

We need a Covenant of Grace because our first representative, Adam, failed to live up to the stipulation of the Covenant of Works. Adam's failure in the Garden brought sin and misery and death into the world and made it impossible for man to earn of merit eternal life thorough obedience to the law: 
The Covenant of Grace is a fulfillment of the Covenant of Works. What Adam could not do, Christ did. And with Christ fulfilling all of the stipulations (conditions) of the Covenant of Works, God is now able to enter into a Covenant of Grace with his people  forgiving them their sins and counting them righteous in Christ. [3]


2 Timothy 1:9, GODS PLAN BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF TIME WAS TO SAVE US!!!

PHOTO: 2 Timothy 1:9, GODS PLAN BEFORE THE BEGINNING OF TIME WAS TO SAVE US!!!
Posted by Priscillah Mushi on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 at 7:31 AM
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http://priscillahmushi.blogspot.sg/2014/08/2timothy-19-gods-plan-before-beginning.html



God's Rescue Plan is from Eternity [1]
The amazing truth is that the gospel of Jesus is God's ancient purpose and plan. There are two aspects that must be recognised: This divine plan has its roots in eternity, not in time; and, it is revealed to us and is centred in Christ.

The gospel is not God's afterthought, following the sin of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It was not a quickly-hatched rescue mission after the "experiment" with the creation of the human race went awry. No, Paul's argument is that the gospel of Christ is not an afterthought, but a forethought of God. He had already thought about it before He began creating the universe. He had already made provisions for man.



Because of Adam's choice to sin, the world now lives under the curse, and we are all born with a sin nature (Romans 5:12).
PHOTO: Because of Adam's choice to sin, the world now lives under the curse, and we are all born with a sin nature (Romans 5:12). We will suffer the consequences of evil unless we accept the cure for evil, Jesus Christ!
The gospel is not God's afterthought, following the sin of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It was not a quickly-hatched rescue mission after the "experiment" with the creation of the human race went awry. The gospel of Christ is not an afterthought, but a forethought of God. He had already thought about it before He began creating the universe. He had already made provisions for man. 

Why God would create the universe remains a mystery, for God is self-sufficient in Himself. He does not need the universe, nor is it required for His well-being. Why would God create the human race? Was it because He was lonely? He could not have being. As the triune God - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit - He already had the fullness of love and community in Himself. The Trinity could exist for eternity without any other to add to the happiness, comfort or welfare of God.

Though the creation is a mystery, we can find a hint in God's character to His possible motive for creation. Scripture proclaims that one of the key aspects of God's character is that "God is love" (1 John 4:8). God's love is perfectly selfless and could be the reason for His creation of all things, especially the human race.

He created us because He loves us. His creative act is entirely for our benefit: He wants us to have fellowship with him, and as a heavenly Father, He loves to see us flourish in His kindness and generosity.

But the tragic truth is that the human race He created sinned and rebelled against Him. Filled with pride and arrogance, human wanted an existence without God - as if that were possible. In response, God could have, borrowing modern computer language, "rebooted" His creation. He could have set a law within His creation such that if human beings rebelled against Him, the entire system would self-destruct immediately, but He did not. However God did give Adam and Eve a dire warning: "You must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will certainly die" (Genesis 2:17).

When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, there was no sudden implosion of the universe. But something bad was set in motion. Human beings lost their fellowship with God, and the universe begin a countdown to destruction. Decay sets in. Paul described this process in his epistle to the Romans: "the creation was subjected to frustration" (Romans 8:20). He further mentioned the "bondage to decay" that had set in and how "the whole creation has begun groaning" (Romans 8:21-22). Did God do anything to rescue His creation? Yes. This is at the heart of the gospel.



Grace is the love of God
The love with which God created the universe and the human race is the same love that forms the basis of the gospel of Christ. The apostle John states it beautifully: "This is how God showed his love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins" (1 John 4:9-10). As far as God's redemptive purpose towards human beings is concerned, one best summarises this love of God - grace. We are recipients of God's grace in more ways than we can imagine. From first to last, we have received God's grace, as Paul argued in his epistle to the Galatians.



Grace is the love of God

PHOTO:  Grace is the love of God
God's character is that "God is love" (1 John 4:8). God's love is perfectly selfless and could be the reason for His creation of all things, especially the human race. He created us because He loves us.
Posted by Simon Dewey, "Of Such is the Kingdom of God"
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http://ldsbookstore.com/resize/Shared/Images/Product/Of-Such-is-the-Kingdom-of-God-Print/of-such-is-the-kingdom-of-god-simon-dewey.jpg?lr=t&bw=1000&w=1000&bh=1000&h=1000
http://ldsbookstore.com/simon-dewey-of-such-is-the-kingdom-of-god



Grace is undeserved, unmerited, unearned divine favour
Grace is how God relates to us. His love comes to us and touches our lives through grace. And what is grace? It is unmerited divine favour, in that we receive what we do not deserve. The amazing truth of God's grace, according to Paul, is that this divine grace is first make available to us not when we turn to Christ, or even before we turn to Christ, but as Paul puts it: "This grace was given to us before the beginning of time" (2 Timothy 1:9, emphasis added). In another epistle Paul put forth a similar truth when he declared that God chose us in Christ though we do not deserve it, "before the creation of the world" (Ephesians 1:4).



Grace is undeserved, unmerited, unearned divine favour

PHOTO: Grace is undeserved, unmerited, unearned divine favour
That means nothing you can do can ever make God love you more, and nothing you do can make Him love you less. He has already given you that grace in Jesus.  "This grace was given to us before the beginning of time" (2 Timothy 1:9).
Posted by showersofgrace on December 2012
Background texture from sanami276 on Deviantart.

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http://rebloggy.com/post/love-art-christ-jesus-god-christian-christianity-typography-bible-hope-faith-gra/35915626287


God's grace is the only answer to our salvation
Scientists today believe that time and space began with the Big Bang, a primeval cosmic explosion through a continuous expansion of the universe was set in motion. Some Christians who subscribe to this scientific theory hold that God created the universe with the Big Bang. Before that space and time did not exist. Even from this perspective, God's grace was already made available before the Big Bang. Why would Paul make such a statement? We should understand that Paul was not making a scientific statement but a theological one. Before the beginning of time and the creation of the world, there was no human or material universe. The implication is that there is nothing anyone could have done to contribute to our salvation. It is entirely the grace of God.



God's grace is the only answer to our salvation

PHOTO: God's grace is the only answer to our salvation
Who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the wine would burst the wineskins, and the wine and the skins would both be lost. New wine calls for new wineskins. (Mark 2:21-22)
When we are bound by legalism, we try to keep the law instead of looking to Jesus to transform us from the inside out. But Jesus wants to release us, his bride. We no longer need to rely on our ability or religious achievement or anything else. He invites us to depend completely on him. When we do, we can experience such freedom! We can rest in our Bridegroom, trusting in his unconditional love for us and his unlimited power to work all things out for good.
Before the beginning of time and the creation of the world, there was no human or material universe. The implication is that there is nothing anyone could have done to contribute to our salvation. It is entirely the grace of God.
Posted on 9 January 2015
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http://www.treasuredministries.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Enduring-Gaze.jpg
http://www.treasuredministries.com/new/



God's grace was pre-planned
God's grace was first make available to us not when we turned to God in repentance, nor when we were born, nor when Adam and Eve sinned - not even when Adam was created. No, God's grace was make available to us before the world began. There is no human action of merit when we think of our salvation in Christ. All glory and honour goes to God alone. This biblical truth that we are saved by God's grace alone, sola gratia, was received by the Reformers in the 16th century.

How did Paul discover this? From his relationship with Christ, in his reflections and prayers,and as he considered his own life. Paul was amazed more and more as he considered God's abundant and ancient grace. Yes, he was converted on the road to Damascus. Yes, he was educated in the Jewish faith under Gamaliel. He had an impressive pedigree and record of training and piety. In his own words, "If anyone else thinks he has reasons to put 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; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for legalistic righteousness, faultless" (Philippians 3:4-6).


When Jesus appeared to Paul on the road to Damascus, Paul was blinded by His glory.
PHOTO: God's grace was pre-planned
When Jesus appeared to Paul on the road to Damascus, Paul was blinded by His glory. Paul was converted and filled with the Holy Spirit. Not only was his physical sight restored, but he also received spiritual vision. The more he contemplated (think about) the cross of Jesus, the more he recognised his own sinfulness that placed Jesus on the cross. There was nothing in his background that could earn him his salvation. The more Paul related with his Lord, the more he realised the immensity of the grace of God.

In addition he realised that this grace of God began before time. This must have endlessly amazed Paul, filling him with wonder and awe at God's goodness and kindness, and at the realisation of how ancient God's salvation plan was. It is unbelievable, yet true, that our salvation was in God's mind long before anything existed on earth.
Posted by U.B. David & I'll B. Jonathan, Inc.
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8I5DtWc7Qdk/VPv0vQsmkCI/AAAAAAAAfe0/ayISPm9ZpFU/s1600/4_paul-conversion.jpg
http://ubdavid.org/advanced/greatsalvation/graphics/4_paul-conversion.jpg
http://ubdavid.org/advanced/greatsalvation/great-salvation_04.html



If there is anyone who could be saved and received eternal life on his own merit, it would be Paul, so he might have thought. Many others who impressed by the piety, learning and zeal of this young man would have thought likewise too. But from the moment Paul met the crucified and risen Christ, his whole religious edifice crumbled. He saw that there was no good in him. Nothing in his impressive list of social background and achievements could ear him his salvation. The more he contemplated (think about) the cross of Jesus, the more he recognised his own sinfulness that placed Jesus on the cross. Thus Paul declared himself the "worst of sinners" (1 Timothy 1:16).

On another occasion, Paul would recollect: "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God - through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 7:24-25). There was nothing in his background that could earn him his salvation. He concluded: "I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord." He looked at his pedigree and achievements and said, "I consider them rubbish" (Philippians 3:8).

The more Paul related with his Lord, the more he realised the immensity of the grace of God. The truth of the crucified Christ dominated his thinking, constantly reminding him that he was saved not by any good work of his, but by the completed work of Christ on the cross. In addition he realised that this grace of God began before time. This must have endlessly amazed Paul, filling him with wonder and awe at God's goodness and kindness, and at the realisation of how ancient God's salvation plan was. It is unbelievable, yet true, that our salvation was in God's mind long before anything existed on earth. Paul realised that in the gospel of Christ, he was plugging not just into history, but into eternity where God's plan of salvation was conceived. As English clergyman John Stott wrote, "God's predestination and election belong to eternity, not time."

Indeed, there is nothing you and I can do to earn merit for our salvation unto eternal life. It is entirely by God's grace. [1]

 

Are there any attitudes and habits of yours that need correction after knowing that God's choice of you predates history?
My attitudes and habits that need correction [6]
When we are a baby ...
Our parents daily spoon feed us to be stronger,
They hold our hands to guide us, to strengthen our legs to walk,
They look after our daily needs, our 3 meals, our education.

Finally we are a man....
We walk our own ways, we listen to no one, we did what we think is right with no concern for others. We only think of our own survival and position in the society.

When we are in our 50's ....
We consolidate our power, we established our position, we kept on increasing our power.... We are invincible, or so we thought...

When our end of the path comes ...
Our legs becomes weak, our legs don't hold its own, our meals need to be spoon fed once again. Our physical body reduced in weight ... we have been there before, so we think and finally realise that ... we walk the way that every man kind need to go.

The full circle.... So why can't we always remember our humble beginning is from God?

We should walk God's way, we should listen to God, we should not only do what we think is right with no concern for others. We should not only think of our own survival and position in the society, but also about others too. [6]



Walk God's way, Good things to come

PHOTO: Walk God's way, Good things to come
We should walk God's way, we should listen to God, we should not only do what we think is right with no concern for others. We should not only think of our own survival and position in the society, but also about others too. 
Posted by Camille Allen on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at 2:12 PM
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http://camilleallen.blogspot.sg/2013/09/good-things-to-come.html


NOW, is a good time to ponder over the meaning of life and get in with a religion for comfort and guidance.

For all the wealth and glory comes to naught at the death bed and we are all equal on that day. [7]

At the end of the day salvation and greatness is not measured by the vast material wealth accumulated or power once possessed (except those in Heaven's treasury) but what we give of ourselves as a sacrifice to make life better for everyone around us including our loved ones according to our calling. [8]


How should you response to this truth about God's grace?
Responding to this truth about God's grace in Our Relationships [9]


Respond to God's grace -  Extending grace to others, in our families, neighborhoods, and workplaces
How do we respond to God's grace? One way that we respond is by extending grace to others, in our families, neighborhoods, and workplaces. If we are going to live with God forever, we will also be living with each other forever. We were designed not for eternal isolation, but for living together and interacting with one another. Life's greatest joys come in our relationships with other people.



Respond to God's grace -  Extending grace to others, in our families, neighborhoods, and workplaces
PHOTO: Respond to God's grace -  Extending grace to others, in our families, neighborhoods, and workplaces
We were designed not for eternal isolation, but for living together and interacting with one another. Life's greatest joys come in our relationships with other people.
Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” (John 8:7)
Posted by Jolene Engle, The Grace Challenge on 8 October 2014
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http://joleneengle.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/grace-challenge-series.jpg
http://joleneengle.com/the-grace-challenge/



Respond to God's grace - Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31)
Life's greatest hurts come from other people, too. So if eternal life is going to be happy, we need to learn to get along with people without hurting them. The essential ingredient we need here is love. The most important commandment, Jesus said, is to love God, and the second-most-important command is, "Love your neighbor as yourself" (Mark 12:31).



Respond to God's grace - Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31)

PHOTO: Respond to God's grace - Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31)
Posted by Dominicans Interactive  2015
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http://dominicansinteractive.com/love-your-neighbour-as-yourself/



If we are going to be like Jesus, we need to love people - even people who are hard to love. Jesus set the example for us, coming to die even for the people who hated him. As good parents know, love means a willingness to be inconvenienced, a willingness to set aside our own concerns to attend to the needs of someone else. Love is a lot more than good feelings - it must also include good actions.



Respond to God's grace - Willing to serve
God is good not because he is powerful, but because he is good. He always uses his power to help other people, not to serve himself. We praise people who risk their lives to save others; we do not praise people who had the power but refused to use it. We admire self-sacrifice, not selfishness.

Jesus came to serve, not to lord it over people (Matthew 20:28). He told his disciples they should not be like power-hungry rulers, but should set an example by helping people. "Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant" (verse 26). Jesus shows us what the Father is like (John 14:9) - not just what he was like 2,000 years ago, but what he is like all the time.

True greatness is not in power, but in service. God sets the example; as does Jesus. The meaning of life is not in having authority over others, but in helping people. That is the only way that eternal life is going to be enjoyable for everyone.

Jesus set many examples of service. A special one happened the evening before his crucifixion. He got down and washed the 12 disciples feet as a lesson in humility and service. "I have set you an example," he said, "that you should do as I have done for you" (John 13:15). Don't consider yourself too important to kneel down and help somebody. Leaders in the church should be servants.



Response to God's grace - Willing to serve

PHOTO: Response to God's grace - Willing to serve
JESUS WASHES THE FEET OF THE DISCIPLES
"I have set you an example," he said, "that you should do as I have done for you" (John 13:15). Don't consider yourself too important to kneel down and help somebody.
Posted by John Ritchie on April 5, 2012 at 8:45 AM
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https://ritchie77.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/am_587968_4938633_353620.jpg
https://ritchie77.wordpress.com/2012/04/05/holy-week-42012/



Paul said we should "serve one another in love" (Galatians 5:13). "Carry each others burdens," he wrote, "and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ" (Galatians 6:2). "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves" (Philippians 2:3).

If we are selfish, we will never be satisfied, but if we serve, we will find it self-rewarding. We are more satisfied when we help than when we take. Jesus told us this because it is so unlike the assumptions that most people make.

"This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another" (1 John 4:10-11). If we want to be like Jesus, if we want to have a meaningful life, then we need to serve others.



Response to God's grace - Serving in the church
One way that we serve others is by being active participants in a community of believers - a church. No church is perfect, just like no person is perfect, but the church is something that God designed to help us on our journey with Jesus. The church teaches us about Jesus, reminds us of his grace and promises, and gives us opportunities to worship together. The church helps us keep our purpose in focus.

The church also gives us opportunities to exercise patience and forgiveness. We may not like these "opportunities," but they still help us learn to be more like Jesus. Paul reminds us of the example we follow: "Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you" (Colossians 3:13). "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you" (Ephesians 4:32).

Educators know that we learn by listening, but we learn much more when we participate. Jesus taught his disciples not just in words, and not just in his example, but also by giving them work to do. "He sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick" (Luke 9:2). After his resurrection, he again assigned them work: "You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8). And they learned as they went.



Response to God's grace - Serving in the church

PHOTO: Response to God's grace - Serving in the church
Jesus taught his disciples not just in words, and not just in his example, but also by giving them work to do.

"He sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick" (Luke 9:2).
Serve others by being an active participants in a community of believers - a church. We will learn more, and be changed more, by getting involved.
The Fisherman Of Men, published by Educa Verdad on May 12, 2012
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http://i.ytimg.com/vi/yDnFNUQo83k/maxresdefault.jpg - (Involved in his work.jpg)
https://www.savetubevideo.com/?v=yDnFNUQo83k



If you want to be like Jesus, get involved in his work. He left it to us, not because we could do a better job than anyone else, but because it is for our good. We will learn more, and be changed more, by getting involved.



Response to God's grace - Share different talents "for the common good" (1 Corinthians 12:7)
Have you ever noticed that different people have different strengths? Believing in Jesus does not eliminate our differences. Being like Christ does not mean that we all have to look alike, dress alike and act alike. In fact, God purposely gives different strengths to different people (1 Corinthians 12:11). We are not to brag about our abilities, nor to wish we had someone else's (verses 14-26). Rather, we are to use our skills "for the common good" (verse 7).

Some people are very talented, but no one has all the talents that society needs. God makes sure that everybody is lacking something, so that we learn to work together. "Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering Gods grace in its various forms" (1 Peter 4:10). The church is a great place to learn to be like Jesus by serving other people.



Response to God's grace - Share different talents

PHOTO: Response to God's grace - Share different talents "for the common good" (1 Corinthians 12:7)
Some people are very talented, but no one has all the talents that society needs. God makes sure that everybody is lacking something, so that we learn to work together. "Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering Gods grace in its various forms" (1 Peter 4:10).
Posted by The Sanctuary Social Newsletter on 6 February 2013
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http://www.thesanctuaryministries.org/soul-sonday/rescuednow-free



We are to serve peoples physical needs, and also their spiritual needs. One of the biggest spiritual needs that this world has is the message of salvation in Jesus Christ. The church is called to take this message to the world; each believer has a message that can encourage and help many others, and we will become more like Jesus if we become less self-conscious and more willing to share the message.

Why do we share the gospel? It is not a means of getting brownie points with God. It is not a way for us to brag about how good we are. Rather, it is a way to serve others, to help them with one of their most serious needs in life.

People need to know that God loves them, that their lives have meaning and purpose, that there really is hope even when physical life seems pointless. God has good news for them, and we share it because people need it.

Of course, it is deeply satisfying to be used by God to help someone else. Sharing the gospel gives us a tremendous sense of significance, because we are taking part in a work of eternal worth, sharing in the work of God himself. That's part of what it means to be like God, to be like Jesus. God made us in such a way that we would find our deepest satisfactions in doing the work that he himself does. We were made for this!



Response to God's grace - "Live in harmony with one another" (Romans 12:16)
We are saved by grace, not by our works. God sent Jesus to die for us, and he forgives us, not on the basis of our works, but because of his mercy. Now, if God is like that, and we were born to be like God, what does this say about our relationships with one another? It totally transforms them!

If we follow Jesus, grace needs to fill our families, our friendships and our workplaces. Being like Jesus means that we are not always demanding to get our own way. We are not bragging about ourselves or insulting others. Paul describes the results of God at work in our lives: "The fruit of [Gods] Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" (Galatians 5:22-23).

"Honor one another above yourselves," Paul writes (Romans 12:10). "Live in harmony with one another" (verse 16). "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love" (Ephesians 4:2).

"Encourage one another and build each other up.... Always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else" (1 Thessalonians 5:11, 15).



Response to God's grace - 'Live in harmony with one another'

PHOTO: Response to God's grace - "Live in harmony with one another" (Romans 12:16)
"Encourage one another and build each other up.... Always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else" (1 Thessalonians 5:11, 15).
Source: Book "I Am I Am",  Monday, August 27, 2012
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http://espiritualespiritualidade.blogspot.sg/2012/08/a-evolucao-de-um-anjo.html



Husbands, how would it make a difference in the way you treat your wife? (See Ephesians 5:25.) Wives, how would it affect you? (See verse 22.) Those who are employed, how would it affect your work? (See Ephesians 6:5-8.)

We all start out unlike Jesus. We start as sinners, as enemies of God, as selfish, self-seeking people. And yet that is precisely what we need to be saved from, to be rescued from. So there's a lot of changing that needs to happen.

If we are to be like Jesus, our relationships may have to change a lot. It won't be easy, and it won't happen overnight. It takes time, so we need patience with the process, both in ourselves and in others. We need faith that God will finish the work he has started in us.

God has the most fulfilled, most satisfying life possible - and he wants us to enjoy eternal life, too. He wants us to be like he is. God is "compassionate and gracious ... slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin" (Exodus 34:6-7). [9]


Write down any commitment that you would like to make to God.
Commitment that I would like to make to God. My Intentions, Hopes And Prayer [10]

 
Find a clear, biblical and comprehensive approach to the concept of grace.
The concept of grace taught by the Bible is that the Lord, in His power and majesty, in His wisdom and love, bends down to us in our brokenness and humility to provide all our needs. That's grace.



The concept of grace taught by the Bible is that the Lord, in His power and majesty, in His wisdom and love, bends down to us in our brokenness and humility to provide all our needs. That’s grace.

PHOTO: The concept of grace taught by the Bible is that the Lord, in His power and majesty, in His wisdom and love, bends down to us in our brokenness and humility to provide all our needs. That's grace.
From Grace for my Heart, Dave Orrison's thoughts on grace on 22 June 2011, 7:39 am
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https://graceformyheart.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/8.jpg
https://graceformyheart.wordpress.com/2011/06/22/grace-for-the-humble/



Live in confidence of God's unconditional love (Grace), forgiveness, tenderness and patience with us.
Relax into a larger amount of grace - feeling the healing balm of unconditional love, AS ourself - and learn why so many of our efforts to improve, grow and evolve leave us unsatisfied.



Relax into a larger amount of grace - feeling the healing balm of unconditional love, AS ourself - and learn why so many of our efforts to improve, grow and evolve leave us unsatisfied.

PHOTO: Relax into a larger amount of grace - feeling the healing balm of unconditional love, AS ourself - and learn why so many of our efforts to improve, grow and evolve leave us unsatisfied.
From spiritual teacher Miranda Macpherson
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http://relaxingintogodcourse.com/sites/all/modules/theshiftnetwork/tsn_courses/frontend/files/RelaxingIntoGod/images/WalkingRoad.jpg
http://relaxingintogodcourse.com/



Live out the First Great Commandment: to love God with all of our heart, all of our soul, all of our mind and all of our strength (Luke 10:27).



Love God with all of our heart, all of our soul, all of our mind and all of our strength (Luke 10:27)

PHOTO: First Great Commandment: Love God with all of our heart, all of our soul, all of our mind and all of our strength (Luke 10:27)
Posted by Susan Bryant on Wednesday, 31 December 2014 at 6:25 PM
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http://scrubsontherun.blogspot.sg/2014/12/poised-on-year.html


Sincerely strive to live a life pleasing to God. Struggle with the falling short of wholehearted love and obedience. In all our striving, we must never forget that it isn't God's heart but ours that we want to conquer. [10]



Live Our Lives Approved and Pleasing by God!!

PHOTO: Live Our Lives Approved and Pleasing by God!!
In all our striving, we must never forget that it isn't God's heart but ours that we want to conquer.
Posted by Wayne Bolan on 16 January 2012
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http://www.gospelbondservant.com/2012/01/11078/



We have the assurance of salvation when we trust Jesus with our lives, that's it.  Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future. Grace is waiting to be accepted all this while. Accept Salvation Now!! - Wayne Bolan



Assurance of salvation
PHOTO: Assurance of salvation
Once we trust Jesus, He, our great Heavenly Physician, will perfectly heal and restore us, thus our assurance is in Jesus, not in ourselves or our future.


If we have accepted Jesus and His death on the cross for our sins as full payment for our sin, we have Jesus; therefore, we are forgiven, we are saved, we possess the gift of eternal life, and heaven will be our home.


When we stand on the Word of God by faith in what Jesus has done, then the Bible assures us that our forgiveness and salvation are guaranteed.


Because you have believed in Jesus, and because you have entrusted your life to Him, you can be certain that He will take care of you until the day that He returns and takes you to live with Him forever. Your life and eternal destiny are in His hands, and He won*t drop you!

From now on, when Satan brings doubts to your mind, put your faith in the facts that are recorded in God's Word. Learn to say: "God says it. I believe it. and that settles it!"
Posted by Marsing Church of the Nazarene
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http://www.marsingnaz.org/site/cs/editorial.asp?page=4

 
By Robert M. Solomon, Bishop of the Methodist Church in Singapore from 2000 - 2012



Reference

[1] From "Faithful to the end" A Preacher's Exposition of 2 Timothy, ©Copyright  2014 by Robert M. Solomon, ISBN 978-1-62707-241-0, PART ONE: UNITED WITH CHRIST, Chapter 2 "I know whom I have believed" (2 Timothy 1:1-18), Page 19-23.

[2] https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+1%3A9&version=NIV, 2 Timothy 1:9, New International Version, Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® ©Copyright  1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®

[3] http://www.blogos.org/exploringtheword/Covenant-Theology-3-Grace.php, Covenant Theology 3: The Covenant of Grace, By Blogos.org,  ©2011-2015 blogos.

[6] http://forums.asiaone.com/showthread.php?t=76683&page=2, Re: LKY fighting rare nervous disease, by Ryuuenji on 06 November 2011, 01:45 PM

[7] http://forums.asiaone.com/showthread.php?t=76683&page=6, Re: LKY fighting rare nervous disease, by honkypong's Avatar on 07 November 2011, 05:36 AM

[8] http://forums.asiaone.com/showthread.php?t=76683&page=5, LKY fighting rare nervous disease, by MonkeyBusters on 06 November 2011, 10:30 PM

[9] https://www.gci.org/disc/17-relationships, Responding to God's Grace in Our Relationships, by Michael Morrison in 2003 and updated in 2012.

[10] http://yearningheartsjourney.blogspot.sg/2013/12/7-biblical-facts-about-grace.html, 7 Biblical Facts About Grace, By Benjamin Schfer, 22 December 2013.

NIV, New International Version
1 Corinthians 12:7 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+12%3A7&version=NIV

1 Corinthians 12:11 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+12%3A11&version=NIV

1 Corinthians 12:14-26 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+12%3A14-26&version=NIV

1 John 4:8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+John+4%3A8&version=NIV

1 John 4:9-10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+John+4%3A9-10&version=NIV

1 John 4:10-11 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+John+4%3A10-11&version=NIV

1 Peter 4:10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Peter+4%3A10&version=NIV

1 Thessalonians 5:11 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Thessalonians+5%3A11&version=NIV

1 Thessalonians 5:15 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Thessalonians+5%3A15&version=NIV

1 Timothy 1:16 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Timothy+1%3A16&version=NIV

2 Timothy 1:9 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Timothy+1%3A9&version=NIV

Acts 1:8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+1%3A8&version=NIV

Colossians 3:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Colossians+3%3A13&version=NIV

Ephesians 1:4 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+1%3A4&version=NIV

Ephesians 4:2 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+4%3A2&version=NIV

Ephesians 4:32 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+4%3A32&version=NIV

Ephesians 5:22 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+5%3A22&version=NIV

Ephesians 5:25 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+5%3A25&version=NIV

Ephesians 6:5-8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+6%3A5-8&version=NIV

Exodus 34:6-7 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+34%3A6-7&version=NIV

Galatians 5:13 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians+5%3A13&version=NIV

Galatians 5:22-23 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians+5%3A22-23&version=NIV

Galatians 6:2 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians+6%3A2&version=NIV

Genesis 2:17 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis+2%3A17&version=NIV

John 8:7 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+8%3A7&version=NIV

John 13:15 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+13%3A15&version=NIV

John 14:9 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+14%3A9&version=NIV

Luke 9:2 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+9%3A2&version=NIV

Luke 10:27 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+10%3A27&version=NIV


Matthew 20:26 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+20%3A26&version=NIV

Matthew 20:28 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+20%3A28&version=NIV

Philippians 2:3 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+2%3A3&version=NIV

Philippians 3:4-6 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+3%3A4-6&version=NIV

Philippians 3:8 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians+3%3A8&version=NIV

Romans 5:12 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+5%3A12&version=NIV

Romans 7:24-25 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+7%3A24-25&version=NIV

Romans 8:20 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+8%3A20&version=NIV

Romans 8:21-22 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+8%3A21-22&version=NIV

Romans 12:10 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+12%3A10&version=NIV

Romans 12:16 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+12%3A16&version=NIV