Archives For Salvation

Why Does He Save Us?

jordantmoody —  October 23, 2014 — Leave a comment

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses made us alive together with Christ– by Grace you have been saved-– and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. Eph. 2:4-6

So God…

  1. Loved us
  2. Saved us
  3. Raised us

But why?

Have you ever thought about that?

Why did God go through all the trouble to stick with us good for nothing mess-ups?! Well, the answer is found in verse 7 and also in Psalm 67:2

WHY:

So that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.  Ephesians 2:7

that your way may be known on earth,

your saving power among all nations. Psalm 67:2

The answer isn’t as fuzzy feely as you might have hoped.

  1. God saved us to promote his own grace and kindness.
  2. God saved us to show his saving power to everyone everywhere.
  3. God saved us to glorify himself.

At first, I had a hard time coming to grips with this megalomaniac I was reading about here. But it all started to make sense to me through the following illustration that just popped into my brain the other day.

It’s the 4th quarter, it’s the last 10 seconds, it’s the last shot to win the game. Who do you want taking that shot? I would want my best player taking that shot. I would want the best player in the world taking that shot.

It’s a penalty kick in the 93rd minute of the game. It’s tied 1-1. You make this penalty kick and you win the game. Who do you want taking that kick? The best player, obviously.

For me this whole idea becomes very clear to me when I take into account my inabilities and God’s supreme abilities. God is the best ever.(period) There is nothing else like him. He calls himself I AM THAT I AM in order to insure our awe (pick gaping jaw off of ground) at his infinite state of being. He was there before the foundation of the world. He is. We are. He is the Uncaused Cause. We only exist because he exists. The very notion of existence exists because he exists. Okay. You get the point.

It’s the end of time. You only got one shot at death. Jesus steps up to the plate.

He’s pinch hitting for me. Jesus is up to bat for me.

So when we win. (Revelation says so) I’m glad He gets the glory.

Because He deserves it. He hit the home-run I would never have been able to hit.

Thank-you Jesus.

All glory and honor to your name.

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Ephesians1:18,19

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.

Check out this fascinating quote explaining the meaning of Paul’s unique phrase the “eyes of your heart.” It is more than just a misjudging of the location of one’s ocular devices. It is Paul describing the importance of the Holy Spirit’s regenerating work in our hearts allowing us to see the truth.

Paul uses a strange construction here: the eyes of your heart may be enlightened. Usually we think of the eyes as being in our head, and we connect the head with the brain and the brain with the mind. Hence we say that we understand a particular teaching with the mind. But the apostle refers to the eyes of the heart. What does he mean?
He means that by nature we are closed to the things of God. He does not mean that we cannot discuss them nor have intellectual debates about them. But the heart in New Testament terms refers to the central disposition, inclination, bent, or proclivity of the human soul. In simple terms, the bias. Everybody has a bias and prejudices. The word ‘prejudice’ is usually a pejorative term, but what it literally means is to prejudge certain things, to have a standpoint, a viewpoint.
Our natural prejudgment of reality is against God. To receive the truth of God requires that our ‘anti’ bias be changed. The key work of the Holy Spirit in regeneration is not giving new knowledge to the brain but changing the disposition of the heart. Before the Spirit turns that heart of stone into a heart of flesh, we have no desire for the things of God. We may desire the blessings that only God can give us, but we have no affection for the things of God. At the moment of regeneration, the eyes of the heart are opened somewhat, but this is just the beginning. The whole Christian life involves an unfolding and enlarging of the heart’s openness to the things of God. There are concepts, attitudes, and values in my life at present that do not please God, for there will be stony parts to my heart as long as sin abides within me. Sin clouds my thinking, my will, my desires, my affections. There will always be parts of me that need to be opened more and more to let the fullness of God’s truth dwell in me. — The Purpose of God: Ephesians

Faith or Works?

jordantmoody —  February 25, 2014 — Leave a comment

J.C.Ryle

Moreover, the Scriptures nowhere teach us that faith sanctifies us in the same sense and in the same manner that faith justifies us! Justifying faith is a grace that “worketh not,” but simply trusts, rests, and leans on Christ (Rom. 4:5). Sanctifying faith is a grace of which the very life is action: it “worketh by love,” and, like a mainspring, moves the whole inward man (Gal. 5:6). (Holiness, xviii).

Here are some of my thoughts as I pondered this quote by J.C. Ryle.

  1. Justification is by faith alone. 
  2. Sanctification is made possible through faith and evidences itself through action. 
  3. One ought to question original justification if  there is no outward workings of your sanctification. Saving faith moves your entire body, livelihood, and lifestyle to worship and adorn the gospel to the betterment of Christ’s name. We do not do these things to be saved but because we are saved. The old man is passed away behold and the new has come. Being new requires a turning from something and changing into something else.(alternative lifestyle) Without any change we are viewed as dead for no outward metamorphosis has evidenced itself and therefore no visible witness can be shared to others. 
  4. Sanctification should not be considered legalistic but rather the natural out working’s of your changed desires over time.  

 

Faith Without Works Is Dead (James 2:14-26)

14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good[a] is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. 24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. (Ezek. 36:26–27)

This is a cataclysmic event. “Getting saved” is not about praying a prayer and then continuing to live our lives as though nothing happened. No, when God enters our lives, we are changed from the inside out.
— from Multiply

Isaiah 50:10 – Let him who walks in darkness and has no light trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.

Africa used to be the Dark Continent in light of the absence of a gospel presence and any knowledge of the continents interior. Now, we see places around the corner in our very own neighborhoods that are dark and without light of the truth. I pray the Lord will use us to reach the dark places of Micronesia.

Isaiah 51:!5 – I am the Lord your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar— the Lord of hosts is his name.

On this trip we will be travelling to a few Islands via boat. I do not know if Jamie and I will get seasick or not but the power to calm the ocean waves is the God we serve.

Isaiah 52:7-10 – How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.”

8 The voice of your watchmen–they lift up their voice together they sing for joy; for eye to eye they see the return of the Lord to Zion;

9 Break forth together into singing you waste places of Jerusalem, for the Lord has comforted his people; he has redeemed Jerusalem.

10 The Lord has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.

Follow the colors and bold type font to link the challenges from God’s Word.

Romans 10:14,15- How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 

15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”

Are my feet beautiful in the sense that they are worthy of beautifying my Savior? Certainly not in my eyes. However, because of Jesus’ precious blood shed for me, my feet are made beautiful in God’s sight. I am now worthy to walk down the way of Salvation and told to lead others down the way of life by following the footsteps of Jesus.

 10 The Lord has bared his holy arm before the eyes of all the nations

This is the only verse in the Bible that mentions this concept of God making his holy arm bare. This phrase means freeing the arm of any constraint or constricting movement caused by clothing. This was done by warriors when entering battle or someone who was ready to get to work and be free to move. God has a battle plan and is ready to enact his plan throughout all the nations and even to the ends of the earth. 

Isaiah 49:6 – …I will make you as a light for the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.”  

How, limited is our view. We support our tunnel vision when we ignore the God’s global vision. We forget his work around the world. God is working in your neighborhood, in your town, in your city, in your state, in your country, in your continent, and in your world. We limit God when we forget to consider His power to reach “all nations” with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I hope to be a small part of that work that no false religion, worldview, person, or thing can stop.  

Isaiah 40:28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.

The Creator of the ends of the earth – The phrase, ‘the ends of the earth,’ means the same as the earth itself. The earth is sometimes spoken of as a vast plain having limits or boundaries (see Isa 40:22). It is probable that this was the prevailing idea among the ancients (compare Deu 33:17; 1Sa 2:10; Psa 19:6; Psa 22:27; Psa 48:10; Psa 65:5; Psa 67:7; Psa 98:3; Isa 43:6; Isa 45:22; Isa52:10). The argument here is, that he who has formed the earth could not be exhausted or weary in so small a work as that of protecting his people.

I just finished reading through II Peter in my devotions. Here are some meditations I wrote down from chapter 3:

God’s character leads him to be patient. This patience leads to salvation. So, I can conclude then that God’s character leads him to provide salvation. He is a salvation-providing God. These truths give me some framework for understanding how God works in specific situations. There is a lot I may not understand in a given circumstance. But I do know something: God desires to bring salvation to people. He desires to save lost people, and he desires the continual salvation of found people. So, when I long for the new heavens and new earth and grow tired of the groanings of this life, I need to remember that in this time God is patiently waiting. And as he patiently waits he accomplishes salvation, not just for others but for me; not just for me but through me.

Themes In Isaiah

bobbyemberley —  April 26, 2012 — 1 Comment

I’ve been reading through Isaiah recently. It’s a tougher book to read through, but I’ve been trying to pick up on some major themes.

1. God takes sin seriously.

2. God will save a remnant.

3. God is the one in control, accomplishing his purposes.

These are basic truths that we need to be continually reminded of. What I think is cool is that these are all truths that are directly related to the gospel. Yet, we see them in the OT. Another reminder of the continuity and grand storyline of the Bible- salvation is found in Jesus Christ!

 

Great thought from my devotions this AM…

“Once you are a child of God, your greatest crisis is over. You may lose the whole world, but you will not lose your soul.”

Be reminded daily, through the hard times and the good times, that our Salvation is amazing…let the power of the Gospel help hold you up at all times!

Stay strong…Dig deep into God’s Word!