Our culture demands that people earn what they get. The stories Jesus tells turns that thinking on its head. Grace really messes around with our idea of fairness. Listen as we continue our Kingdom Generosity series by looking at how Jesus is generous with grace. We join Paul Kiss as together we dig into Matthew 20:1-16; Luke 15:23-31; and Romans 5:20-21. These passages challenge us to celebrate the excessive generosity of God’s grace for everyone, including ourselves.
Generous With Grace
Speaker: Paul Kiss
Date: November 17, 2019
Matthew 20:1-16; Luke 15:23-31; Romans 5:20-21
1 | The Problem With Grace
● We like grace until it is given to someone else, especially when we don’t think they deserve it.
● Our culture demands that people earn what they get. The stories Jesus tells turns that thinking on its head.
2 | A Story About Excessive Grace
● This is a story about people being chosen not on qualification but simply because the landowner wanted to hire them. This is what grace looks like.
3 | Another Story About Excessive Grace
● The oldest son, who did everything right, refuses to go into the house and join the party. He didn’t like the Father’s grace given to someone who didn’t deserve it, according to his standard of fairness. He was “book-keeping” and his brother was in the red.
4 | In These Stories, Which Character Are You?
● In these stories there is judgement, but the the judgement is for those who refuse to enjoy the beauty of grace.
“Bookkeeping is the only punishable offense in the kingdom of heaven. For in that happy state, the books are ignored forever, and there is only the Book of life. And in that book, nothing stands against you. There are no debit entries that can keep you out of the clutches of the Love that will not let you go.”
— Robert Farrar Capon
1. Grace really messes around with our idea of fairness. How does our culture program us to demand fairness and earning what we get? What examples can you point to?
2. Where have you seen examples of grace being lived out in our culture? (in the news, locally, etc). How does it make you feel to hear or see that happening?
Discussing and Learning:
3. Read Romans 5:20-21. What do you learn about God’s grace? Cf. Rom 6:1-2; Titus 2:11-13 to help.
4. Read Ephesians 2:4-10. What do you learn about God’s grace?
5. Read Hebrews 4:14-16. What do you learn about God’s grace?
6. Read 2 Peter 3:18? What do you learn about grace? How can this happen?
7. In the stories covered in the sermon, what do you learn about grace?
Making it Real:
8. Who is there in your life, for whom you are withholding grace? What is keeping you from granting it, or celebrating it in their life?
9. As you revisit the stories in Matthew 20 and Luke 15, how much do you resemble the grumbling workers or the older son? How will you let God into your heart to soften it with his love and grace?
1. Watch the following video about generosity: Watch Now.
2. Think of one person in your life who needs to know God’s grace. Then consider how you can live out for them what that grace is like, by the way you interact with them. Maybe it will open a door to explain to them how God’s grace works, in Jesus Christ.