Beyond the Weekend

August 20 | Two Hills

August 20, 2021


For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

Read: Ephesians 2:8–10
Ephesians 2


Jesus lands his sermon on the hill with a warning, but one that comes with great hope. He wants people to be followers more than fans. The life of blessing comes in the doing.

It can be easy to think that our actions save us—that as we obey, God rewards our obedience with salvation. But the entire message of Jesus and the New Testament reveals following Jesus is both a choice to trust in the work of the cross (something we can never earn) and a choice to surrender our lives to him, leading to living life in the God-created way God. Pastor Jeff Manion describes this as being people of “two hills.” First, we place our faith and trust in the hill of the cross, where Jesus died for our sin to restore our relationship with God. Then we choose to live out the life he gives us as we follow his teachings on the hill (the Sermon on the Mount).

The Apostle Paul (one of Jesus’s earliest followers) summarizes this in Ephesians 2:8-10. He tells us that we are saved by faith in Jesus Christ and his work on the cross. Our rescue is not a reward to earn but a gift to receive. As we follow Jesus, we live out the good works he created for us to do—not to earn his love but out of deep gratitude for the love we’ve already received. Watch this video clip as Pastor Jeff Manion teaches about God’s grace and Jesus’s incredible gift.


God calls us to two things: (1) Accept his gift of salvation through Jesus and (2) live out our new life in obedience to him and his teachings. If you would like to have a conversation about what it means to accept Jesus’s gift of salvation through faith, please email us at We’d love to chat with you.


Join us this year as we read through the New Testament.

Today’s reading is Galatians 3.

Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.

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