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We are pleased to present the sermons of Dr. James Merritt, one of America’s great expository preachers. For more than 40 years, Dr. Merritt has preached God’s Word through the local church he pastors, as well as through Touching Lives weekly television broadcasts. 

Dr. Merritt’s messages are available here via digital download, along with outlines, note pages, PowerPoint slides and other resources, for a modest cost.

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Living As God's Masterpiece

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Scriptures: Ephesians 2:1-10, Leviticus 19:1, Malachi 6:8, John 13:35, Psalm 139, James 2:19


Before following Christ, we were all dead, spiritually. There was no spiritual life in us. And God, in his mercy, revived us. According to Ephesians 2, He has “raised us up” Paul said. Paul says not only has God loved us, but he has lifted us up to sit with Jesus in heavenly places. He has restored us, revived us, brought us back from the dead. And lifted us up. And then the Paul gives us the point. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”


The word “workmanship” in the English is literally the Greek word “Poiema” from which we get the English word “poem.” In the first century when this book was written, the word was used to refer to any piece of art: not only a poem, but a sculpture, a song, or a painting. We might translate the word “masterpiece.” We are God’s workmanship, his handiwork, his concerto, his sonata, his symphony. We are God’s masterpiece. In this message, Jonathan Merritt unpacks Paul's words to reveal encouraging truths about our value and purpose as God's own handiwork.


"Without Michelangelo, there would be no Sistine Chapel. Similarly without God, without Jesus, without the cross of Christ, we would be stuck in our ugliness. But God the artist has set out to make us beautiful and righteous. When we decide to follow Jesus, God takes us and makes us beautiful. All of that grimy sin caked on us gets washed off an we become beautiful people, capable of giving people a glimmer of God. God’s attributes should be the brushstrokes of our lives. That’s why we should constantly try to think like Christ, to desire the things he desires, to love the things he loves, to do the things he wants. It is like a long restoration process. That is how we display all the grandeur of his handiwork." --Jonathan Merritt


Keywords: Rome, Italy, masterpiece, painting, Biagio Biagetti, Michelangelo, frescoes, Sistine Chapel, artist, holy, merciful, just, Alexander MacLaren, distortion, Paul, Luke, John, Matthew, New Testament, Alamo, mirror, encouragement, inspiration


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