Day 285 – Thru the Bible
Today we continue in Acts. Here is the second Acts video.
Video – Read Scripture: Acts 13-28
How does this video help you understand the second part of Acts better?
Acts 13 – With the coming of Jesus, forgiveness of sins is now available (verse 38). The law of Moses gave temporary provision for forgiveness by instituting priests to mediate between God and His people, but the law could not lead to eternal and ultimate forgiveness (verse 39). The law serves only to heighten our understanding of our own sin, not to lessen its reality (Romans 7:7–12). Through Jesus we can avail ourselves of a power that the law never had. The law hung over us as a ministry of death, threatening to kill us for our sins; the Spirit of Jesus delivers us from the bondage of sin, guilt, and death into new life (2 Corinthians 3:6–7). What the law was powerless to do, because it was “weakened by the flesh,” God did by “sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh” to be a sin offering (Romans 8:3).
God’s grace is overflowing and abundant (Romans 5:15, 17; 6:1; 2 Corinthians 4:15; 8:9; 9:8, 14). It is also powerful: grace motivates changed lives, as Paul writes: “The love of Christ controls us!” (2 Corinthians 5:14). The law threatens and demands, but in itself cannot produce the love true holiness requires (Matthew 22:37–38). This is not to discount the value of the law. The law of God is “perfect . . . true, and righteous altogether” (Psalm 19:7–9) and “holy and righteous and good” (Romans 7:12). We live in accord with the law to demonstrate love for the One who gave it for our good and His glory. But the law has no inherent power to produce the life it requires. The apostle Paul writes, “If a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law” (Galatians 3:21). Law does not empower us to do what it mandates—only grace can do that (Matthew 10:8; Romans 2:4; 6:14; Titus 2:11–12).
Repeatedly in Acts we see that God’s grace plays the crucial role in the advance of the gospel. When the Gentiles hear the gospel, we read that “as many as were appointed to eternal life believed” (verse 48). Even belief in the gospel is a gift of God’s grace.
The reference in verse 47 to Isaiah 49:6 shows that the gospel going to the Gentiles was God’s plan all along. Acts 13:46 is perhaps the official marker of the apostles turning to the Gentiles.
How does this chapter help you understand the different roles of the Law and grace?
Acts 14 – Those who proclaim the gospel must realize that they are no more than rescued sinners, filled with the Holy Spirit, sharing the good news.
Once again we see that faith in Jesus comes as a result of God’s gracious initiative, as Paul and Barnabas revel in the fact that God “had opened a door of faith to the Gentiles.”
The true gospel will never puff us up in arrogance, but will compel us to love others who are in the position we use to be – separated from God’s love.
How do you allow God’s love for you to flow through you to those around you?
What other thoughts or questions does today’s video and reading bring up?
Some of these notes are from the ESV Gospel Transformation Bible study notes. We highly recommend this study Bible.
Videos produced by www.TheGospelProject.com.
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