Select the topic or date of your choice to view a detailed outline of the teachings. Each time you study the Word, you position yourself to receive divine direction from God. When you spend time researching the Scriptures, you acquire wisdom for every situation in life. As you study, expect to find answers to your questions and solutions to your problems!
God has made available to us everything we will ever need in life. We access what we need by faith in what He has done; the spiritual laws that are in place allow us to do this. We should know that, as believers, we have the authority to use these laws by exercising our faith. The only thing that can stop us is a hardened heart. The danger in having a hardened heart is that, in this condition, we cannot activate God’s laws to work for us and we will not see manifestations. When the disciples were astonished to see Jesus walking on water immediately after watching Him perform a miracle feeding the multitudes with little food, their response was due to hardened hearts. We must be on guard against this spiritual state. Learning to trust God and what He says, instead of what we see in the natural realm, will keep us in constant expectation of the next supernatural miracle in our lives.
God sent Jesus to show us grace, not to condemn us. To understand this on a deeper level, we must know exactly when we are dealing with condemnation. This spirit comes straight from the enemy, and makes us feel like we aren’t good enough and can’t become who God wants us to be. It triggers guilt, fear, and a sense of defeat because of our past sins and mistakes. When we trace these emotions back to their foundation, we realize that any issues we may be struggling with are based in condemnation. Feeling condemned, and letting this feeling control us, is part of the curse of trying to live by the Law of Moses. When we are aware of how insidious and deadly condemnation is and how it attacks us, we can master it and accept God’s favor.
The new covenant of grace is completely different from the old covenant of the law. Now that we are living under grace, we need to know what life is like under this covenant. The law was designed to reinforce the people’s guilt and constantly remind them of their shortcomings, but when Jesus came, He came to redeem and deliver, not to shame or punish. Most churches today seem to have forgotten this; instead of focusing on God’s favor toward us, they focus on telling us to keep the rules and uphold the standards of the law. Condemnation from the law is not a part of the new covenant, and if we feel condemned, that feeling did not come from God. The law heaps fear and shame on us, but grace offers us mercy, compassion, and forgiveness. Jesus had plenty of opportunities to condemn others, but instead of judging them, He forgave them and showed them grace. Faith in Christ transformed the lives of Zacchaeus as well as the woman caught in adultery, and it will change us as well.
When we compare the Law of Moses to grace, there are some stark differences. One of these differences is that nothing in true Christianity is earned. The old covenant of the law was based on performance; God could not bless the people if they did not perform perfectly. Under the new covenant of grace, our belief that Jesus performed flawlessly and kept all the commandments when no one else could negates the need for us to perform. We are now blessed by our faith in what He did and, through His unmerited favor toward us, we can receive good gifts that we did not earn. One of the greatest gifts Jesus gave us was the opportunity to be born again. This gives us new natures that are as perfect as God, Himself, and frees us, because even when we miss the mark and sin, we are now no longer slaves to it.
The world is a backward place, and we regularly see double standards when it comes to relationships between men and women. As parents, we know that this mindset of inequality affects our children, but we can fight back against gender stereotypes through grace-based parenting. If we are not careful, we can slip into self-effort and legalism. When we raise our children consistent with God’s grace, however, we allow Him to lead us in teaching them His Word through our own example. This operates by letting the overflow of grace that we have received spill over onto our children, revealing God’s nature to them. How we view God is reflected in our parenting style. When we realize that we do not have to work to please God because He is already pleased with us, we are empowered to show grace to our children.
Comparing the old covenant of the law to the new covenant of grace is similar to comparing night to day. Under the law, mankind was required to keep more than 600 laws and regulations or be cursed. Breaking even one of the rules brought guilt and condemnation, and the people were constantly reminded of their sins. Under grace, all of the old laws have been replaced by one simple rule—God’s law of love. We are now no longer under the threat of punishment because God has replaced curses with blessings for those who believe. We can conclude from this that the new covenant is vastly better than the old one. Instead of performing to earn God’s blessings, we receive them by faith in the finished works of Jesus.