The Cross

JUSTIFIED - Titus 3:3-8

In Scripture, and still in our world today, people get what they don’t deserve — consider a party for the prodigal son; life and forgiveness instead of stoning for the woman caught in adultery. When have you received a gift you didn’t deserve, or escaped punishment you did deserve? How did that make you feel? What in your past do you have the most trouble believing God has forgiven? How does it make you feel that Christ died for those things?

The term “justification” declares our righteous standing before God. (See Romans 5:18; Romans 8:33-34; Titus 3:7.) What mood, or feelings, does Paul have because of this? Think about the amazing gifts God has given us in verses 4-7. Verse 5 makes it clear that these gifts are not based on what we have done. What is the basis?

According to verses 8-9, how should we act, or react, to what God has done for us? Think about how Jesus’ death on the cross affects us, as well as those we reach out to.

THE CONQUEST OF EVIL - Colossians 2:6-15

John Stott says, “As the 21st Century world seems to get worse and worse, some Christians regard the situation as hopeless. They pull back into isolation, waiting only for Christ to return. By contrast, there was no defeatism about the early Christians. They spoke rather of victory. The Crucified was actually a conquerer.”

When you think about evil in our world, do you feel discouraged or hopeful? Why?

Colossians 2:13-15 describes Christ’s victory over evil. How do these verses make you feel? What should be our message to the world we live in? Contrast the challenge in verse 6 with the warning in verse 8.

According to verses 13-14, how did Christ deal with our sin? According to verse 15, how did Christ deal with the power of evil?

When will evil finally be conquered? How might God be leading you to be involved in the conquest of evil?

Study Colossians 1:15-10 and Ephesians 1:15-23, concerning Christ’s victory over evil powers.

— Pastor John

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