For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (that done in the body by the hands of men)– remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.
~ Ephesians 2:8-14
For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.
~ Romans 10:10
We who are Jews by birth and not ‘Gentile sinners’ know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified. If, while we seek to be justified in Christ, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not! If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker.
For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!
~ Galatians 2:15-21
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; He took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.
~ Colossians 2:13-16
“Therefore, my brothers, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you. Through Him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses. Take care that what the prophets have said does not happen to you: “‘Look, you scoffers, wonder and perish, for I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if someone told you.’
~ Acts 13:38-41 (Also note: Habakkuk)
I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin.
~ Mark 3:28
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son [Form], that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son [Form] into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son [Form]. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
~ John 3:16-18
Note: Today’s paintings are: Ary Scheffer’s “Christ in Gethsemane”; Heinrich Hofmann’s “Jesus Healing The Sick”; Andrea Mantegna’s “The Crucifixion”, 1459; Raphael’s “Christ Falls on the Route to Calvary”, 1516; Ary Scheffer’s “Christus Remunerator”, 1847; Ary Scheffer, Christ Weeping Over Jerusalem, 1851; and Annibale Carracci’s “Corpse of Christ”, 1583-85. Header image is Giovanni Battista Crespi’s (Il Cerano), “The Risen Christ”, 1602-04.