- The Law. Yes or No: We are saved according to our obedience of God’s law. If you answer “No,” that we are saved by grace and not by our works, then answer this question: Does a Christian’s behavior differ from that of a non-Christian? If so, what is the source of the difference? Did either Abraham or David demonstrate perfect obedience to all of God’s commands? Your lesson describes David’s sins as “sordid.” Do you agree? Should your church be more–or less–generous in the way it treats people in the church who have sinned even in a public and disgraceful way as David did?
- Debt or Grace? What is the danger of clinging to a works-oriented religion? If we believe that God cannot accept us unless we become sinless, how hard should we work to get rid of sin in order to become a person who is acceptable to God? Can a self-absorbed person obey Christ? Why or why not? Tell the others in the class how you think an ordinary Adventist sinner compares to Abraham with his background. Does our ancestry or family heritage have anything to do with our salvation?
- The Promise. Luther took a strong stand against the power of the Pope to forgive sin and the consequent selling of indulgences when he submitted his 95 theses to the Wittenberg Castle church, sending a copy to Albert of Mainz (who sent a copy to Pope Leo). Martin Luther’s proposal was based on the idea that salvation is by faith and not deeds. How did Paul use Abraham’s example of faith and salvation to help early Christians understand the role of grace in their salvation? Why was Paul so eager to uphold the importance of the law before the law was delivered from Mount Sinai?
- Law and faith. Do you think it is easy is it to assume that we are saved by the good things we do? Or that being a Christian means behaving in a way that is in harmony with God and His law? What position does the Seventh-day Adventist church take regarding the role of our works (what we do) in our salvation (our final reward)? Living as we do in a mixed up world, what can you and I as final-day Christians do to keep the essence of salvation–righteousness by faith alone–at the forefront of our message to the world?
- The law and sin. Why do you think so many people want to believe that the law was eliminated when the New Covenant was established? Would you like to live in a world where there are no universal laws about lying, murder, stealing or other sins? If the law was fulfilled and thus eliminated at the cross, would the consequences of actions such as adultery and murder be less painful? Why do you think Satan wants us to look at our good works as righteous? Does the cross make it clear that we are safe in Jesus because of the shedding of His blood for us? How?