Chapter 14: Romans

New Testament Video Guide, (2001), 14–15


Purpose

To help students understand the relationship between faith, grace, and works in their progression toward eternal life.

Before the Video

Activity

Have students read Moses 1:39 and discover God’s work. Tell them that in the world there are many false ideas on how a person gains salvation. Have students determine if immortality comes through faith, works, grace, or a combination of the three. Have them determine if eternal life comes through faith, works, grace, or a combination.

Note: You may wish to define the following terms:

  • Faith: Trust—confidence in and reliance on Jesus Christ and His Atonement.

  • Works: Actions—keeping the commandments, keeping our covenants, performing ordinances, and developing God-like traits.

  • Grace: Help—divine help given through the love and mercy of Jesus Christ.

Using the Video

Faith and Works 8:32

“Look For” Activity

Tell students that this lesson will help them understand how faith, grace, and works enable us to gain salvation. As they watch the video, have them look for the differing opinions the skiers have on how to survive.

Show the Video

The video is an analogy about how we are saved. Three men are trying to reach the North Pole when a severe storm hits and delays their expedition and threatens their survival. They argue about what they should do to be saved.

After the Video

Discussion

Ask students what the skiers were concerned about after the storm. What did each skier think should be done to survive? What was the pilot’s role? (to provide the support that would keep them alive). Tell your students that, like skier one, some individuals believe that we are saved only by our own works. Others, like skier two, believe that we are saved only through the grace of God and do not have to do anything of ourselves. Still others, like skier three, know that we are saved through the grace of God after putting forth our own best effort. Help your students identify the falsity of the idea that we can save ourselves through our works, or that we do not have to do anything to be saved.

Understanding Paul

Tell students that, like the first skier, some of Paul’s audience had lost sight of God’s power to save them. They became so involved in following the law of Moses that they did not recognize that salvation was in and through the Savior. So Paul spent most of his time preaching grace instead of works. Tell students that we can get a false understanding of how we are saved if we base our belief on just a few verses of scripture. To illustrate this point, read 1 Corinthians 15:21–22 and ask students whether they think the free gift of God described in these verses is immortality or eternal life. Use some or all of these additional examples:

Selective scriptures on works

Ask students how they would say they were saved if they based their whole belief for salvation on Deuteronomy 10:12–13 (or Matthew 5:48, or Philippians 2:12).

Selective scriptures on faith and grace

Ask students how they would say they were saved if they based their whole belief for salvation on Galatians 2:16 and Ephesians 2:8–9.

Looking at Paul as a whole

Tell students that justified means to be found innocent of sin. Have students read Romans 3:24 and ask, “How are we justified?” (by grace). Have them read verse 28, and ask them the same question. We are saved by grace and faith. Have them read Romans 2:13 to find out who will be justified (see also 2 Nephi 25:23).

Summary

We are saved by the grace of Jesus Christ through His atoning sacrifice. Immortality (resurrection) is a free gift we all receive because of His grace. Eternal life is also a gift of grace, but it is conditional upon each individual’s own best efforts. Those who make their best efforts to follow Christ are promised His help, strength, and assistance to do works they could not otherwise do (see 2 Corinthians 9:8). Through His grace we receive a measure of faith (see Romans 12:3), and through faith (confidence and reliance upon Christ) we please God (see Hebrews 11:6). Our faith is perfected by our works (see James 2:22). Therefore, we gain eternal life through Christ by living His commandments and being perfected in Him (Moroni 10:32).