Summary: Examines the reality of Christ’s death and its implications for our lives today.

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INTRO – Did Christ die for nothing? Of course, we know the answer to that question is a resounding, “NO!” He had to die. Scriptures clearly teach us this truth:

- “When we were utterly helpless, X came at just the right time and died for us sinners.” (Rom. 5:6 NLT)

- “I passed on to you what was most important…that X died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said.” (1 Cor. 15:3 NLT)

- “Since we believe that X died for everyone, we also believe that we have all died to the old life we used to live.” (2 Cor. 5:14 NLT)

- “[X] died for us so that we can live w/ Him forever…” (1 Thess. 5:10 NLT)

- “…X died to set them free from the penalty of sins they had committed under the first covenant.” (Heb. 9:15 NLT)

- “X also suffered when He died for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but He died for sinners that He might bring us safely home to G…” (1 Pet. 3:18 NLT)

So why would P ask this question? He wants to make it absolutely clear that there is absolutely no other way that a person can be saved except through a faith relationship w/ X. Jesus Himself said, “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.” (Jn. 10:9 NIV)

- The Law cannot save.

- Keeping rules and regulations cannot save.

- Good works cannot save.

- Religion cannot save.

- No system of beliefs apart from a personal rel. w/ Jesus X and Him alone.

P said, “I do not set aside the grace of G.” KJV says it this way: “I do not frustrate the grace of G.” Word for “frustrate” means to void, invalidate, make ineffective, nullify.

- We void G’s grace – the undeserved gift of eternal life through His Son – when we try to be made righteous in any other way other than through faith in X and His atoning death on the cross.

- It is as if G’s grace does not exist any longer.

- It is as if G’s grace has been destroyed.

- It is as if G’s grace does not work any longer.

- It is as if G’s grace was not worth the sacrifice that He made.

But G’s grace DOES exist! It DOES work! It has not been voided. It has not been destroyed! It was worth the sacrifice! You and I are living testimonies to the power of G’s grace. His grace has changed us forever, and our lives should be a testimony of His saving, life-changing grace. We should show the power of our changed lives. His grace has made it possible for us to live a crucified life. His grace has given us the tremendous freedom to live the crucified life.

- We have been saved by His grace.

- We have been justified by His grace. Remember: “Just if I’d never sinned.”

o Wiersbe: “Just think: the righteousness of X has been credited to our account! G has not only DECLARED that we are righteous in X, but He deals w/ us as though we had never sinned at all! We need never fear judgment b/c our sins have already been judged in X on the cross.” (p. 696)

o Rom. 8:1 – “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in X Jesus.”

- We live by His grace.

o Brennan Manning – “Though lip service is paid to the gospel of grace, many Xns live as if it is ONLY personal discipline and self-denial that will mold the perfect me. The emphasis is on what I do rather that what G is doing. In this curious process, G is a benign old spectator in the bleachers who cheers when I show up for my morning QT…Our huffing and puffing to impress G, our scrambling for brownie points, our thrashing about trying to fix ourselves while hiding our pettiness and wallowing in guilt are nauseating to G and are a flat denial of the gospel of grace.” (The Ragamuffin Gospel, pg. 15-16)

- G saved us. We did not save ourselves. X died for nothing if we could save ourselves.

- G will keep us saved. We cannot keep ourselves saved. X died for nothing is we could keep ourselves saved.

- G will empower us to live for Him. We do not have the power on our own to live for Him. X died for nothing is we had the power on our own to live for G.

- G will fix us when we are broken. We cannot fix ourselves.

Reminds me of the story of the overly eager young man who had just received his plumber’s license and was taken to see Niagara Falls. Studied it for a minute, then said, “I think I can fix it.” X died for nothing if we think we can fix ourselves apart from Him.

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