Paul says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith.” This is what we’ve been talking about. The heart of it all. The beginning of it all. The doorway of all these things—that God has rescued you, forgiven you, declared you righteous, adopted you into His family, called you His own as a gift of His grace. A free gift. If someone works for a gift it’s no longer a gift, it’s a wage. But if someone gives you a gift, the action would be reception. You receive a gift.
The heart of this discussion is very important, but our question today is not about how grace works. The question is how do grace and discipleship fit together? Paul has the answer and it’s amazing.
“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
Workmanship in Greek translates to the product of an artisan. Have you gone to an opera or symphony? It’s the greatest expression of these arts coming together, in a beautiful artistic way. That’s the product of an artisan. God says we are His workmanship. God’s been working on us—a masterpiece of His grace. We are His workmanship because we are saved. We are recreated—a new creation in Christ to do good works.
Where did the good works flow from? They’re not before salvation as a way of earning it. None of us crawled ourselves “out of the pipe”. We have nothing to boast about. It’s not by works, but because we are His workmanship, our discipleship flows out of the seed of grace.
Grace is the seed of spiritual maturity and spiritual growth which flows out of a river of obedience and the center of God’s will of good works.
How do grace and discipleship fit together? They fit together like a hand in a glove. Grace is the doorway into how all good works and obedience become possible for us. Once He has rescued us by His grace and we have been found in Christ, we can spin forward in good works. Discipleship is important. Grace fuels all of those things; it is the seed.
I’ve been rescued. How about you? I can’t conceive of being rescued out of the depth of that death, and then saying to God, “Cool! Thanks for that God. I’m covered? YOLO, I’m going to live how I want.” Paul says we are fools if we think that.
Gods wants us to follow Him. It’s grace-based discipleship. That’s what Jesus calls us to. Grace is the seed of spiritual growth and maturity. It’s free. It’s secure. It’s assured for you. It spurs you on towards intimacy with Him and towards a life of joy and freedom. That’s found in discipleship.