Preaching the Gospel, Preparing a People

Letter From Dan Preston - August 13, 2021

Letter From Dan Preston

August 13, 2021

Good evening brethren and Happy Sabbath!  This week, we look forward to the discussion of the Booklet "Is God a Trinity" in Hickory, with our discussions in Columbia scheduled for August 21st and in Charlotte on August 28th.  

The next booklet in our series will be, "What Does the Bible Teach About Grace?"  Hopefully, everyone has their copy that was given out a couple of months ago.  If not, you can request it online here.  With the Fall Holy Days approaching, we will stretch out reading time on this one a bit, and plan on discussing it in October.  You might consider getting started this week by reading the first two chapters, "Introduction" and "Grace: A Biblical Overview."

An interesting origin

As I began reading the booklet, "What Does the Bible Teach About Grace?" I was reminded of the story of John Newton.  Newton is perhaps best known for writing the hymn, "Amazing Grace."  But do you know why he wrote it?  

While the captain of a slave ship in 1748, he encountered a terrible storm.  During the storm, he cried out to God for help.  The ship survived the storm, as did Newton.  He then devoted his life to God, became a minister and worked to abolishing the slave trade.  Quite a turn of events to say the least!

Our turnaround

While none of us perhaps has quite as dramatic a story as John Newton, we probably all have a story we could relate along those lines.  Perhaps it was a serious health issue that got our attention.  Maybe it was frustration on our own shortcomings as a human being.  Perhaps it was an addictive behavior.

Whether God causes certain events to happen in our life to get our attention or not, we may never know.  But I think there's no doubt He uses them.  Traumatic or potentially dire events have a way of getting our attention and making us take stock of our lives.

God's Grace

Whether it was such an event that turned us to God and made us begin to take Him seriously, or whether we came to understand the need for God in our lives in a less dramatic way, one thing is clear:  We need Him and His grace for salvation.  Ephesians 2:8-10 (NKJV) states, "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them."

God's grace is an amazing gift by which we are saved!  Whatever brought us to the point where we accepted this grace, let us live our lives, dedicated to God and walking in the way of His good works!