May 21 Foundational Truths: Grace
Scripture: Ephesians 2:8-10, Luke 19:1-10
It is by grace, through faith, that we have been saved. Our salvation cannot be earned. It is underserved by us and yet graciously bestowed upon us by God who loves us so much He sent His only Son to the cross. None of us is better or sins less than another. So then, having received God’s grace, how should we act? Can we go on sinning because we have already received His grace? No, we are to model God’s saving grace to others. When we work to bring glory to God, we are acting in response to His love for us.
May 28 Foundational Truths: Ascension
Scripture: Acts 1:1-11, Luke 24:44-53
The resurrected Jesus was taken up to heaven in his resurrected body, in the presence of eleven of his apostles, occurring 40 days after the resurrection. The angel tells the disciples that Jesus will return just as they saw him leave. This is confessed in both the Apostles and Nicene creeds. Why is the ascension important? Jesus completed His earthly mission of bringing salvation to all people and physically was lifted up from this world into heaven. The meaning and fullness of Christ’s Resurrection is given in the Ascension. Having completed His mission in this world as the Savior, He returned to the Father in heaven who sent Him into the world.
June 4 Foundational Truths: Pentecost
Scripture: Acts 2:1-21, John 15:26-27, 16:4b-15
Pentecost is sometimes called the birth of the Christian church, even though we trace our existence all the way back to the beginning. Jesus is gone in his physical body, so now the disciples must take what he taught them and duplicate it. The disciples were facing an impossible mission if it was completely up to them. But Jesus promised the Holy Spirit would be with them to guide them and be their counselor. The disciples would be tasked in taking the Gospel to Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth. A huge job for a small group of people.
June 11 Foundational Truth: Holy Trinity
Scripture: John 3:1-17, Acts 2:14a, 22-36, Isaiah 6:1-8
Even before the world began, God already existed and was relational in Himself. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit never had a beginning and never has an end. The very nature of God is relational, which is why we can understand the way God has made us. The Trinity has always been a mystery to believers, but it doesn’t mean that we can’t spend time exploring and understanding it. The doctrine of the Trinity should not be viewed as irrelevant to Christian life and practice. On the contrary, it is only because of the doctrine that the believer is able to live their life of faith at all.