"IT IS GOD WHO JUSTIFIES" (Romans 8:33) Behold the eternal security of the weakest believer in Jesus. The act of justification, once passed under the great seal of the resurrection of Christ, God can never revoke without denying Himself. Here is our safety. Here is the ground of our dauntless challenge, "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God who justifies." What can I need more? What more can I ask? If God, the God of spotless purity, the God of inflexible righteousness, justifies me, "who is he that condemns?" Sin may condemn, but it is God that justifies! The law may alarm, but it is God that justifies! Satan may accuse, but it is God that justifies! Death may terrify, but it is God that justifies! "If GOD is for us, who can be against us?" Who will dare condemn the soul whom He justifies? How gloriously will this truth shine forth in the great day of judgment! Every accuser will then be dumb. Every tongue will then be silent. Nothing shall be laid to the charge of God's elect. GOD Himself shall pronounce them fully, and forever justified: "And those He justifies, He also glorifies."
--- Octavius Winslow
I have never cared much for the term "reformed." First of all, it is not a prominent Bible word, nor is it ever used to refer to God’s elect. They are not "reformed" but reconciled, redeemed and regenerated. We were dead and God gave us life. Neither do I wish to be identified too much with the "reformations" of men. Most of them, though "protesting" the Roman Catholic Church, came out with far too many of the rags of Rome still clinging to them. And, I have found that many who claim to be so, also claim to have been saved under a false gospel and later became "reformed," coming to the doctrines of grace. God’s work of grace in the salvation of His people is not a redoing of the old, a removal of faults, or an amending of what already is, but a "new creation." The need of men in our day is not reform but rebirth! Christ said, "Ye must be born again," born from above through that incorruptible seed of the Word of God. The term also seems to say "I've arrived." But as Paul, "I count not myself to have apprehended..." Even as one reborn, I stand in daily need of reformation!
--Pastor Gary Shepard
LOOKING TO CHRIST TODAY AND EVERY DAY
Many today speak confidently of what they call their “spiritual birthday,” meaning what they consider to be the exact day they were born again. Some use this to gain assurance of their own salvation. Others claim that unless one can point to a spe-cific day on which this happened, as judged by some traumatic religious experience or change of habit and behavior, then one cannot claim to have been born again. This is just one more of Satan’s diversions used to draw sinners away from looking to Christ and Him alone for all salvation, forgiveness, righteousness, eternal life, and glory. The Holy Spirit’s work in the new birth is to bring sinners to conviction over sin and to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as the one and only way of salvation (John 16:8-11). It is true, as our Lord said, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3); “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5); and “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7). The issue in this new birth is not the day it happens but the way it happens by the sovereign power of the Holy Spirit, not the will of man (John 1:12-13), and to Whom the born-again sinner looks to, rests in, and submits to for salvation – THE LORD JESUS CHRIST ALONE! The issue for us NOW in knowing whether or not we have been born again by the Holy Spirit is not looking to some past experience on some specific day. It is, “AM I LOOKING TO AND RESTING IN CHRIST TODAY AND EVERY DAY?”
—Pastor Bill Parker
CEASE YE FROM MAN
Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be ac-counted of? (Isaiah 2:22).
With all the political advertising of the present hour, dividing the opinions of men and women between the various candidates, there is something God's people are to remember: There is no help in man! How can men help us who are ignorant of the most basic truth about men? That being, we are everyone basically evil! Not basically good as most imagine but sinners. A sinner cannot really help a sin-ner. Our life's breath is given to us by God one breath at a time. All true help must come from God alone. Plus, the greatest need of a sinner is a Savior from their sins. There's only One, the Lord Jesus Christ. He's the One who has saved all His people from their sins. He's the One and His cross death is what God appointed: “I have laid help upon one that is mighty; I have exalted one chosen out of the peo-ple” (Psalm 89:19). This country, this world and we as individuals do need help; but it is only to be found in Christ!