10 Rules For Resolving Conflict, Part 3 Assurance of Salvation
- Review the memory verse of the week, and talk about how it relates to the Truth section.
- Review the Pentateuch.
- TRUTH – You can discuss any of the In Bible questions you would like to address. Here are some tips that may help:
- Genesis 18:16-32 – Abraham asked God if He would sweep away the righteous with the wicked. The answer is, of course, no. However, Abraham was assuming that there were righteous people living in Sodom, and evidently believed that his nephew Lot was one of them. Abraham reasoned that if there were any righteous people living in Sodom, then God should not destroy the city, because it would be unjust of God to condemn the innocent with the guilty.
- Romans 1:16-17; 3:21-22 – The righteousness of God in these contexts refers to the righteousness that God gives as a gift. The words “revealed” and “manifest” cause us to understand that God is giving what He demands on the condition of faith, despite our failing performance of His law.
- Romans 4:1-8 – Here you see the words “revealed” and “manifest” replaced by the word “credited” or “counted”. This tells us that the righteousness of God is being revealed by being imputed to the credit of the person who believes, which is Abraham in this case. This means that Abraham was credited as having the righteousness of God, despite his shortcoming in righteousness. The righteousness was not his own, yet it was credited as his own. Keep in mind that this does not mean faith is a meritorious work in itself. It does not earn God’s righteousness; it is the condition upon which He freely grants it.
- 2 Corinthians 5:21 – The Great Exchange spoken of here is what makes justification a reality for sinful people. God graciously imputes Christ’s righteousness to sinful people, and imputes their sin to Christ when He was crucified. In this way His death substitutes for our death penalty, and His righteous life substitutes for our unrighteous life, thus satisfying the demands of God’s justice and making it possible for us to be justified.
- TRUTH – Discuss these terms with your JG:
- Justification – is a declaration that a person has been found righteous. This can only happen for sinful people if God grants the righteousness He demands. He has done this by imputing Christ’s righteousness to us when we place our faith in Him. The imputation of Christ’s righteousness should be thought of as the basis of justification. Justification is the act of God that gives the gospel power to save sinners. You may need to clarify the difference between imputed righteousness and infused righteousness. Imputed righteous is a righteousness that is alien to a person and not their own (i.e., Christ’s righteousness). Nevertheless, it is credited to their account, so that God treats them as if it were their own righteousness. Infused righteousness is also alien (i.e., Christ’s), but it becomes a part of a person’s own moral character, so that God can treat them as actually having their own righteous. This is an important distinction to make since Roman Catholicism teaches that justification is based on infused righteousness. Protestants agree that sanctification is a process of infusing Christ’s righteousness so that our lives bear the righteous fruit of the Spirit. However, we deny on Scriptural grounds that this is the basis of our justification before God. You may want to use the “Major Views of Justification” diagram to discuss this point.
- Adoption – is a removal of the hostility and alienation experienced between God and those who are justified. On the basis of justification, people of faith experience peace and harmony with God. Further, He adopts them into His heavenly family, making them true and beloved children so that they can enjoy fellowship with Him, and experience His fatherly care. Even further, He makes them all to be His heirs so that they all look forward to the promised inheritance. This is the restoration of immortal bodies that will be clothed in glory, and will be able to behold His glory for all eternity.
- EQUIPPING – Give your JG time to discuss both of these questions. Ask 1 or 2 people to share what they wrote to start the discussion, and give more time to the second question. As you discuss it, help your JG to realize that God’s truth must impact the way they live in the world and think about the world.
- ACCOUNTABILITY – Allow time for smaller groups of 2 or 3 to ask accountability questions, and pray for one another.
- MISSION – Discuss how your JG group feels about witnessing. What thoughts come to mind? Make sure to connect witnessing with missional living – making the gospel known through word and deed.