Audio Only

#2 in Series entitled “Grace Works!”
by Pastor Richard Tow
April 10, 2016
Text: Ephesians 2:8-9

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Description: This message is central to the series, Grace Works! The Law prepares the heart to receive grace by showing the sinfulness of sin. Grace alone can transform the heart. Grace is a particular expression of God’s love. It is unmerited, undeserved favor bestowed on us because God is love.

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A.    Last Week: Four Awakenings that prepare a person to receive the gospel.
(1) Awakening to the Existence of God
(2) Awakening to Moral Accountability
(3) Awakening to Personal Transgression
(4) Awakening to Pending Judgement

B.     Purpose of the Law: to awaken us to our own sinfulness & need for a Savior.

C.     Gospel is good news because tells us a Savior has come.

D.    Subject Today: Gospel of Grace

I. Gospel is good news because it offers Salvation that is FREE!
Rom. 3:24 “…being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.”

A.    Grace (charis) is undeserved, unmerited favor of God.

B.     Grace is Love Expressed in a Particular Way.
John 3:16 is the foundation of grace: “…God so loved….”
Illustrated by happily married couple story (Rom. 5:8)

II. Gospel is good news because God’s Grace is Greater than all Our Sin.
Rom. 5:20 “Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more.”

A.    Why God gave the Law: “the law entered that the offense might abound.”

B.     Did God know the failures you would make as a Christian the day you were born again?

C.     Paul was so radical in his teaching of grace that the question naturally surfaced in Rom. 6:1
What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?”

D.    Two weaknesses in American pulpits
(1) Too soft on sin
(2) Too reserved on grace

E.     Only happens “in Christ“ (Eph. 1:7)

F.      Key issue: What are you trusting in?

III. Gospel is good news because it is by Grace and Not of Works.

A.    Grace alone qualifies us.
Eph. 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is theift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

B.     Galatian church’s mistake: Beginning in grace, then proceeding in works (Gal. 1:6; 3:3).
Idea God is gracious to us in initial experience, then “put out” with our struggles as walk with Him.
Rom. 5:8-11 “For if when we were enemies…much more having been reconciled….”
Three-year-old’s first water baptism.

More serious we are about serving God, more vulnerable to trying to perform for Him.

C.     Either grace or works; but not both!
Rom 11: 6. “And if by grace, then it is no longer of works; otherwise grace is no longer grace. But if it is of works it is no longer grace; otherwise work is no longer work.”
Cruise Illustration

There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.”
Heb. 4:9-10 “For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.”



1. What is God speaking to you from this message?

2. Why is preaching the Law important as a preparation for preaching the gospel?

3. Why did Paul’s teaching on grace raise the question in Rom. 6:1 (Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?).

4. Do you think God’s grace is more available in our initial experience our in our day-to-day journey? What does Rom. 5:8-11 say about this?

5. What has been your experience of relying upon the grace of God in your daily struggles as a Christian? What have you learned from those experiences?

6. Can salvation be partly by grace and partly by our own works according to Rom. 11:6 What is the relationship between God’s grace and good works in our lives?