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We continue our journey through Lent with a twist on Lectio Divina I’m calling Lectio Divina Diligens. Click on the link to read about this idea, if you’re not familiar with it.
We’ve come to the fourth Sunday of Lent. Once again let’s look at the second reading: the Epistle Reading, Ephesians 2:4-10.
God - Mercy - Love - Transgressions - Life
God, who is rich in mercy, because of the great love he had for us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, brought us to life with Christ (by grace you have been saved), raised us up with him, and seated us with him in the heavens in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God; it is not from works, so no one may boast. For we are his handiwork, created in Christ Jesus for the good works that God has prepared in advance, that we should live in them.
What leaps out of this passage is the phrase “by grace you have been saved,” which is repeated twice. It was one of the rallying cries of the Protestant Reformation, right up there with “justification by faith” (see Romans 5:1). Using Verbum‘s “Exegetical Study Guide,” I can explore this passage in its original Greek, where I see that the word for grace is χάρις (charis) — yes, the same root for words like charisma and charismatic. It essentially means “gift” (One of Atlanta’s independent bookstores is Charis Books — on their website they say charis is “a Greek word that means grace, gift, thankfulness“).
Salvation - Likewise - σῴζω - Sozo - Sense
Salvation, likewise, comes from the Greek σῴζω (sozo), which carries the sense of being healed or delivered...
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