As David shared on Sunday, as followers of Christ we have been given a second chance – rescued from death, disobedience, and destruction. We have a new destiny – life, love, and heaven. This new destiny is completely from God alone, not through our own effort. In giving us a new destiny, God designed us to carry out His good works. How do we help out @HOME?
Share with your group any significant “before and after” events in your life.
Read Ephesians 2:1-3. Paul reminds the Ephesian church of their former spiritual state – dead in their sin, and unaware of that condition. What do you imagine your life would look like if you were left that way? How is your life different now that you have been rescued by Christ’s sacrifice?
Read Ephesians 2:4-7. What words in these verses describe God’s reason for rescuing you?
Read Ephesians 2:8-9. Do you ever feel the need to earn God’s grace? Why do you think it is hard to accept grace as a free gift?
Read Ephesians 2:10. How do you respond to the idea that you are God’s artistic creation (handiwork/worksmanship)?
What do the following passages tell you about how God feels about you?
- Psalm 139:13-16
- Zephaniah 3:17
- Matthew 10:29-30
- John 3:16
- Romans 5:8-10
- Romans 8:16-17
- Ephesians 1:3-5
- 1 John 3:1
These verses indicate how God feels about everyone. How does His grace and love affect your daily life? How does (should) it change the way you see yourself, others, and the way you act?
Re-read Ephesians 2:10. What is your responsibility? On a practical level, what does this look like?
Read Matthew 5:16 and 1 Peter 2:12. What is the reason for good works?
Why is it hard to live good lives that others will look up to? What works in your life do non-believers see? What do they show about your walk with Christ?
1As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:1-10
Consider how God has uniquely created you – your personality, strengths, weaknesses, family or origin, resources, experiences, etc. What good works do you feel God has prepared you for? Discuss with your group action steps you can take to move forward with what God is calling you to do.