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Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (NASB).  Before we take a close look at these verses, let me say that they are some of the clearest verses in all of Scripture which teach us the way of salvation. They have brought assurance and comfort to millions of believers in Jesus Christ and if you aren’t saved, we trust they will prove to be a blessing to you. Let’s break this down phrase by phrase:

  • For by grace…GRACE means “unmerited favor” and it speaks of God’s gift to those who don’t deserve it. One has said that God’s GRACE is “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” God has provided salvation for sinners FREELY but at the EXPENSE of His Son! Listen to Paul’s words in Romans 3:24, “Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” Again, salvation is absolutely FREE to the sinner, but Christ had to die and shed His precious blood to redeem the sinner.
  • You have been saved…SAVED means to be “delivered from the penalty of our sins.” The Bible declares in Romans 6:23, “The wages of sin is death” and in Hebrews 9:27 we learn that, “It is appointed unto men once to die, and after this the judgment.” In these verses we learn what the penalty of sin is, namely, DEATH and JUDGMENT. In 1 Timothy 1:15 we are taught that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” and shortly before He went to the cross He said, in Luke 19:10For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which is lost.” The moment a sinner believes on Christ for salvation they are SAVED! It is a present possession and thus the word assures us “you have been saved.”
  • Through faith…FAITH means to “believe what God has said.” Romans 10:17 tells us, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” God has told us in His Word that the sinner who believes on His Son is saved and faith BELIEVES HIM! I love the words of the Lord Jesus in John 5:24 which reads, “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.” (NASB). God, who cannot lie, has made this promise to us and we must simply BELIEVE IT! If you have never taken God at His Word about salvation, won’t you do so right now?
  • And that not of yourselves…Here is man’s greatest obstacle to salvation, THEMSELVES. Man thinks he must do something to be saved, but he can do nothing. We learned earlier that one is saved by GRACE; you can’t earn it and you don’t deserve it.
  • It is the gift of God…The greatest gospel verse in all of Scripture teaches us this truth, for John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” God did the LOVING and the GIVING, we do the BELIEVING and RECEIVING. Have you received this precious GIFT?
  • Not as a result of works…We have seen that salvation is by GRACE; we can’t earn it by human merits of any kind. It’s not by baptism, confirmation, attending church, participating in the Lord’s Supper, keeping the Ten Commandments, giving to charity, living by the “golden rule,” or any other works. In John 6:28 Jesus was asked, “What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?” In verse 29 He replied, “This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.”
  • So that no man may boast…If man could earn his salvation he would no doubt be boasting all the way to heaven and even after he got there! But the one who is saved by grace through faith realizes he owes everything to the Lord Jesus Christ and to the work He did on the cross. Paul exclaimed in Galatians 6:14, “But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (NKJV). In Revelation 1:4 we learn that in heaven we will NOT be boasting of something we have done, but we will be praising, “Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood.”

We hope and pray you’ll be there and if you take Ephesians 2:8-9 to heart, YOU WILL BE THERE!  (139.3)