Saturday, August 9, 2014

August 17, 2014 - 10th Sunday After Pentecost

Breaking Open the Scripture Scriptures for August 17th: Genesis 45:1-15; psalm 133; Romans 11:1-2,29-32; Matthew 15:10-28; Theme: God’s grace is sufficient in all circumstances; Song: Rock of Ages Cleft for me UMH 361 Romans: Paul continues to talk about the promise and what it means for the family of Israel, but more importantly, what does it mean for us? How did we get included in God’s family? Paul says that we were grafted in. God’s grace is powerful enough to include us and all of our sinfulness. Just because grace was extended to us, does that mean that God no longer love them? No? God will extend grace even to those who live by the law. God does not make mistakes, and every word of God’s promise is truth. We can rest our faith on that. Salvation belongs to all of the faithful as long as they can claim Christ Jesus. God extends grace to all, but his promise is for the faithful. If you are faithful you are automatically a part of God’s family. Matthew: This is a very important verse of what it means to have God’s grace. Jesus reinforces what Paul has been saying all along in Romans. That responsibility and accountability go along with God’s grace. And that it is possible to do something to fall out of God’s favor. All people are very good at sinning. And it is what inside of us that drags us into sin. But the touch of Jesus is sufficient to make a difference. Jesus assures us that if we have faith in Jesus, then he can enter into our lives and make a difference. Being a child of God is a constant battle. We have to strive to do right and to live right. According to the law however, no matter how hard we try – we will always fail- we are in need of God’s salvation in order to be in God’s favor. It is our faith that makes us whole. Questions: What does it mean to be grafted into the tree? How do you feel God’s grace in your life? What do you think of people who get something for free when others have to pay? Which are you- the one who “freeloads” or the carrying the weight? In God’s eye does it make a difference?

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