Salvation is not God’s response to your best effort! Salvation is a gift from God. In Romans 5:15 Paul highlights “the gift by grace.” Salvation is given to you by God out of His abundant grace. This is truly incredible! Read slowly, Romans 5:17 “For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.” These words stun me, almost speechless! Romans 5:18 also emphasizes this truth, “By the righteousness of One the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.” Some people tirelessly strive to please God by their good works! Why is this so sad? It is sad because Jesus has done everything necessary to please His Father on your behalf! ONLY JESUS COULD DO THIS! In a uniquely divine way, “it pleased the LORD to bruise Him; He hath put Him to grief.” Brothers and sisters, when Jesus cried out on the cross, “It is finished,” He knew He had pleased His Father by making salvation a reality for everyone who would come unto Him by faith! Please do not quickly breeze through this paragraph! But humbly pause in the Lord’s presence, with your heart filled with overflowing gratitude, and thank Him for saving you and for giving you an abounding love for Him! Remember, “He has poured out His soul unto death.” Pour out your life for HIM!

EASTER SUNDAY is just ahead on March 27th. Join me and ask the Lord to guide you as you invite friends and family to join you for our Easter Celebration. Begin praying now for the services. New people will be seated around you… look for them and welcome those you meet. People come to church for various reasons. If you invite someone to join you on Easter, they will probably come. Pray for them before you ask them and then ask them and see what the Lord does. Remember this is His work… we are His people. The Gospel of God is powerful enough to save any who call on Him for forgiveness. Cover your invitations with prayer… the Lord answers the prayers of His people. Ask expectantly and see the Lord use you. Be faithful, church… HE WILL GIVE THE INCREASE! Paul makes this clear in 1 Corinthians 3:6-7 “I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither is he that planteth anything, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.”

REMINDER: Grace Church is your faith community! Some of us have family members here in Greenville or at least close by. Some of us have good close friends we work with or who live in our neighborhoods. Hopefully you live in a community of some kind. Keep in mind that as brothers and sisters, as God’s people, we are related. We are related through the blood of our Lord Jesus… the blood of the New Covenant!!! We are also related by our calling. The Lord has called each of us to be His witnesses! Just as we have Christ; we have each other! You are not serving Jesus alone. Stay connected with your faith community, just as you stay close and connected to Jesus! We serve together for His purposes. Together is always better… God bless you!

He is risen!