Major texts: Gen 3:21; Ps 104:29,30; John 1:4; Rom 5:6-11; Gal 3:13, Matt 27:46
This week, the lesson invites us to look at the connections between creation and the gospel. If this is to happen, several connections of thought need to be made between the two. Discussion may be had along the lines below:
In order for there to be any discussion or any need for salvation, there first must be some adverse condition or circumstance in which someone is caught and from which they need to be saved. Just such a scenario is laid out in Genesis 3. Discuss the adverse effects of sin, the immediate consequences, the intermediate ones, and the ultimate ones.
In Ephesians 2, Paul delineates the plight of humans. In the first few verses he points out we are dead spiritually, we are enslaved by the devil, the world, and our own human natures. In addition, we are condemned by birth. Together, this is a serious plight indeed, one from which no human can extricate themselves. Only a Savior will do!
Salvation is by grace through faith. Read over the Genesis 3 story looking for evidences of God's grace right from the point of the appearance of sin. How was God gracious to Adam and Eve? How does that grace play out into history?
Notice that God's creative power is not limited, in scripture, to the making of material or physical things. His creative power extends to the creation of a new heart, too.
Think of the plan of salvation as it is played out throughout the Bible. How was salvation obtained in OT times? What methods of demonstration or education did God use in the OT? How did people learn about and participate in the plan of redemption?
In Romans 5, Paul speaks of Jesus becoming sin for us. Can you explain the dynamics by which salvation was wrought out for humans? What do you think of the issue of substitutionary atonement?
Spend a little reflective time with the text, "While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us..." What thoughts come to your mind after reflecting on that for a while?
How does God's grace get evidenced in today's world?
The Bible promises a new creation, one where the old order of things has passed away. Talk about what that new creation will be like? What will the most dramatic difference between this world and the new world be?
Do not neglect to notice the grand scope of redemption. It begins right with the appearance of sin in Eden, and it continues until even the residues of sin are eradicated at the very end of time. What kind of God could or would do such a thing as this?