The Lord was pleased to bless us with a wonderful Bible Conference! Your labors of love and works of faith are greatly appreciated by me and by our visitors. I thank God for you and for how you opened your homes and hearts to those who came to worship with us.
Free and Sovereign Grace
O, my Lord's free and sov'reign grace, What peace that gives to me! Chosen before I saw His face, Elect eternally. God's Son took the place I deserved. For my sin I should die. He, sinners to Himself reserved. On Him I must rely. The Father laid my sin on Christ. (The sins of all His own.) He bore the wrath. He paid the price; Shed His blood to atone. What could I do? I am depraved. I would not seek God's Son. He has done all the work to save. His salvation is done. O, trust in Him, my soul, this hour: He came to find His sheep! O, glorify my Savior's pow'r: He calls His own to keep! (By Gary Spreacker #236 ‘Amazing Grace’)
MAKING CHRIST'S DEATH COMMON
Seeing the slogan, 'Jesus died 4U,' on the bumper of a sports utility vehicle this past week, the Lord brought to mind the scripture "...who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing . . . Hebrews 10:29.
The term "unholy thing" literally means, "to make common, profane, or impure." There are several ways that people do so today with respect to the death of Christ. One is by taking something so precious and worthy of honor, and relegating it to a bumper sticker. The other is to take a truth that pertains only to God's elect, and to make it a generality to rebels for whom God has never purposed salvation, and will know only His eternal condemnation, and upon whom His wrath abides, not His love, John 3:36.
The death of the Lord Jesus is anything but general to all. It is designed for those whom the Father has chosen in eternal love, Ephesians 1:5, and actually and effectually saves everyone for whom it was intended according to His electing grace, John 6:39. -Copied
THE REVELATION OF GOD'S RIGHTEOUSNESS
The redeemed are not only pardoned, but justified, pronounced righteous by Him who is most just, whose judgment is according to truth. Hence the Gospel is termed the revelation of God's righteousness, with which, as we have seen, the believer is invested. We might have expected it to be termed the revelation of his mercy, but what is most astonishing, grace reigns through righteousness unto eternal life.
The bestowment of mercy on fallen man also appeared incompatible with the truth of the declaration, - "The soul that sinneth it shall die;" but in virtue of the unity of Christ and his people, of the Sanctifier and them that are sanctified, he endured the curse which they had incurred; and as they had all sinned in Adam, in Christ they suffered the penalty of sin, and, consequently, are justified from all things by the God of truth. - J. A. Haldane
FAITH AND SCIENCE
In recent years, among certain evangelicals, there has arisen a movement designed to prove the truths of Scriptures by appeal to science. Evidence is sought in the natural world to support supernatural revelation. Snowflakes, blood, stones, strange marine creatures, birds and many other natural objects are brought forward as proof that the Bible is true. This is touted as being a great support to faith, the idea being that if a Bible doctrine can be proved to be true, faith will spring up and flourish as a consequence.
What these brethren do not see is that the very fact that they feel a necessity to seek proof for the truths of the Scriptures proves something else altogether, namely, their own basic unbelief. When God speaks unbelief asks, "How shall I know that this is true?" I AM THAT I AM is the only grounds for faith. To dig among the rocks or search under the sea for evidence to support the Scriptures is to insult the One who wrote them. Certainly I do not believe that this is done intentionally; but I cannot see how we can escape the conclusion that it is done, nevertheless.
Faith as the Bible knows it is confidence in God and His Son Jesus Christ; it is the response of the soul to the divine character as revealed in the Scriptures; and even this response is impossible apart from the prior in working of the Holy Spirit. Faith is a gift of God to a penitent soul and has nothing whatsoever to do with the senses or the data they afford. Faith is a miracle; it is the ability God gives to trust His Son, and anything that does not result in action in accord with the will of God is not faith but something else short of it.