Friday, September 30, 2011
Either the Lord Jesus Christ made His soul an offering for our sin, that He might make an end of sin, or He did not. Which is true?
Either the Lord Jesus Christ was raised from the dead--God, in this way, publicly acknowledging that His offering was accepted, that justice was satisfied, the sin atoned for, and blotted out in the precious blood of Christ--or it was not so. Which is true? And if the sin was laid on Jesus, it cannot be laid on the believer, who is identified with Him in God's sight; if justice was satisfied by the sacrifice of Christ, justice will never demand the sacrifice of the sinner; if Jesus was raised from the dead because of our justification, who is to condemn us?
Marcus Rainsford "Our Lord Prays for His Own" Page 340
Thursday, September 29, 2011
It follows therefore that, according to the purpose and will of Him with whom we have to do, the "Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty," we, as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, cannot be more sanctified than we are.
Oh! that we might drink into this great fact. The reason is a very simple one, it is because the ground of our sanctification is not anything that we are, anything we have attained unto, or can possibly attain unto even by faith; the entire ground of our sanctification in the sight of God consists in what the Lord Jesus Christ is, and what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for us.
Neither can we be more dearly loved; not even in glory shall we be more dear to our heavenly Father than we are now here below, tempest-tossed as we are, and tried and troubled with "fightings without, and fears within."
Neither can we be more "perfect" or "accepted" even in glory; for it is written, "Ye are complete in him which is the head of all principalities and power."
Neither can we be made more [fit] for glory than His grace has already made us; the moment we came as poor sinners to the Lord Jesus Christ and received Him, He "was made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption," in the fullest and in the divinest sense thereof, and in the fullest and divinest measure thereof.
"Our Lord Prays for His Own" by Marcus Rainsford, pp 339-340
Monday, September 26, 2011
Sunday, September 25, 2011
- Up Calv’ry’s mountain, one dreadful morn,
Walked Christ my Savior, weary and worn;
Facing for sinners death on the cross,
That He might save them from endless loss.
Blessed Redeemer! Precious Redeemer!
Seems now I see Him on Calvary’s tree;
Wounded and bleeding, for sinners pleading,
Blind and unheeding—dying for me!
- “Father forgive them!” thus did He pray,
E’en while His lifeblood flowed fast away;
Praying for sinners while in such woe—
No one but Jesus ever loved so.
- Oh, how I love Him, Savior and Friend,
How can my praises ever find end!
Through years unnumbered on heaven’s shore,
My tongue shall praise Him forevermore.
Friday, September 23, 2011
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Monday, September 12, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Friday, September 09, 2011
In this last part of our series on the “fear of God”, I want to look at some of the promises and admonitions that the Bible puts forward related to the “fear of the Lord”. It is interesting to note that God's promise of protection to those that fear him is counter-intuitive. God is the one who hates evil and has set himself against those who do evil and yet his promise is this to those who fear him: “Run to me and be safe.” We fear God and we fear his wrath on sin, and yet if that fear drives us to him, he promises safety and forgiveness. Proverbs 18:10 “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe.”
Here are some promises and other statements from the Bible related to the fear of God:
Luke 1:50 And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
Psalm 111:5 He provides food for those who fear him; he remembers his covenant forever.
Proverbs 10:27 The fear of the Lord prolongs life, but the years of the wicked will be short.
Proverbs 14:26 In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and his children will have a refuge.
Proverbs 14:27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death.
Proverbs 22:4 The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.
Proverbs 19:23 The fear of the Lord leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited by harm.
Psalm 34:7 The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them.
Psalm 25:14 The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant.
Psalm 103:17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children’s children,
Psalm 34:9 Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him have no lack!
Psalm 103:11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
Psalm 33:18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love,
Psalm 33:8 Let all the earth fear the Lord; Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
Psalm 130:4 But there is forgiveness with You, That You may be feared.
Psalm 85:9 Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him, that glory may dwell in our land.
Psalm 103:13 As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
Psalm 145:19 He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them.
Psalm 147:11 but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.
Acts 10:35 but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him.
Thursday, September 08, 2011
I'm continuing a discussion that started yesterday concerning what it means to “fear God”. I described it as respect, awe or profound reverence for God. But I explained that that has different meanings depending on what you know or believe about God. If you believe that God is basically nice and is going to stay out of your business and just sort of love you and pour blessings on you, then your respect or reverence for God will mean one thing. But if you really believe that God hates evil and is intent on judging those who persist in evil, then you will look at it differently.
Yesterday I described how the fear of God applies to those who have not trusted him and believed in his promise of forgiveness and salvation. To those in that camp, God's justice has threatened wrath.
But there is another group of people who have admitted their failure to live up to God's standards and have trusted in his promise to save them and grant them forgiveness. Who are these people? Are they like the teacher's pet? Didn't you hate it in school when there were people who seemed to be able to get away with anything because the teacher seemed to like them better? Is God that way? The Bible says that God is no respecter of persons. If that is so, why are some people let off the hook even though everyone obviously falls short of the perfect life that God requires?
Jesus Christ, God's son, a co-equal part of God, became a human being. He lived a perfect life and then even though he lived such a life, he died. Death and separation from God is the penalty for sin. But he had not sinned. The great news of the Christian faith is that God is willing to count Jesus' perfect fulfillment of the law as though it were your perfect obedience. And he is willing to count Jesus' death as the death and separation from God that you owe because of your sinfulness and disobedience. Anyone who believes that and accepts God's offer is forgiven of every sin he has ever done. He is declared righteous once and for all by God and God promises never to bring up the issue of sin in any future judgment. This offer is made freely to anyone who would like to receive it. There is no favoritism with God.
So, for those who have accepted this offer, what does the fear of God mean? First, I think there is fear, awe, reverence for God because of the wrath we know we deserve but have escaped. Psalm 130:4 “But there is forgiveness with You, That You may be feared.” When we see that God's wrath was upon us, but in his mercy he has forgiven us, it produces a certain kind of fear as seen in this verse.
Secondly it produces the kind of fear that induces obedience. It's not a fear of judgment, but a fear and respect for the fact that God hates sin. In so doing, why would I, a person who had been under judgment but is now under forgiveness, why would I want to keep doing those things that the one who rescued me hates? Why would I scoff at the forgiveness he has given and practically spit in his face and dare him to do something to me?
2 Corinthians 7:1 Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
Proverbs 8:13 The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate.
Deuteronomy 8:6 So you shall keep the commandments of the Lord your God by walking in his ways and by fearing him.
Finally I think it produces a kind of awe and respect that promotes true worship. God is the one who made me, who gave me breath. He provides the food, water, air, strength and all other things I need on a daily basis. He allows me, a criminal against his reign, to live and have freedom. This kind of being deserves every ounce of my worship and praise and adoration. Psalm 111:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever! Revelation 19:5 “And from the throne came a voice saying, “Praise our God, all you his servants, you who fear him, small and great.”
So, what does the “fear of God” mean to you?
Wednesday, September 07, 2011
What does the phrase, “Fear of God” mean? I'm preparing to teach on that subject in the next couple of weeks, and thought it might be an interesting topic for an article here on the Faithful Men Blog.
The “fear of God” is often described as an awe, respect or profound reverence for God. But how that description is understood depends on what you know about God. People have all kinds of ideas about what God is like, but it's important to know what God is like based on statements in his Word, the Bible.
There are basically two classifications of people: those who have believed on Jesus Christ for forgiveness of their sins and have accepted his free gift of eternal life and there are those who have not. The implications of “the fear of God” depends on which of those two groups you are in.
God has a holy and righteous hatred of sin. Sins are those things that we do that don't meet God's standards of behavior and perfection in thought and deed. Jesus said in Matthew 10:28, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” This is from the lips of the one everyone says is so meek and mild and loving. It is wise to fear someone who has the power to throw us into hell. Why would God do that? Because he hates sin and has determined to judge all of those who sin against his rule.
Read what the Bible says in Hebrews 10:26 – 31:
For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
Psalm 7:11 tells us “God is a just judge, and God is angry with the wicked every day.”
You might be saying, “I thought God was a God of love.” He is, but he is angry with those who have not admitted their failure to meet God's standards and that they are in the need of God's grace. He would not be a just king and judge if he just let everyone do what they wanted without any punishment and justice.
So what does “fearing God” mean. To those who are outside of God's grace, it should mean a fear and dread that God means what he says. He will by no means clear the guilty (Numbers 14:18) and he will in fact cast the wicked into hell and all the nations that forget God (Psalms 9:17). I say “should mean” because most people don't seem the least bit concerned about any of this. Maybe it's because they don't believe this is true? Personally, I don't think it's a gamble worth risking.
Next time we'll look at what it means to fear God for those who have accepted God's offer of forgiveness. Do they still need to fear God?