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BEHOLD THE GRACE OF GOD Tune to "THIS IS MY FATHERâ€™S WORLD" SM/DOUBLE Words by JIM BYRD
1. How could a holy God, Whose glory we extol; Forgive and justify the lost, Rescue and make us whole? For sins against His law, Cannot unpunished go; But God in wisdom long ago, Purposed His grace to show.
2. O what a word of grace, God sent His own dear Son; To save poor sinners Jesus came, The helpless and undone. Behold the Son of Man, Condemned and led away; He died a sacrificial death, For sheep that went astray.
3. Redemptionâ€™s work is done, Our Lord and Savior died; And with His work upon the cross, Our God is satisfied. Christ bore our guilt and sin, And suffered in our stead; He washed away sinâ€™s awful stain, When in our place He bled.
4. Christ Jesus rose again, He conquered death and hell; Ascended high, He ever reigns, Who can His glories tell? He is our Righteousness, Our Brother and our Friend; Our Mediator, God and King, Whose praise shall never end.
SCRIPTURE READING: ISAIAH 6:1-8 (pew Bible, p. 518)
"Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob." (Psalm 81:1)
"THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS" Jeremiah 23:6 Christâ€™s person being infinite, so must be His righteousness and therefore, He is said to have saved His people with an "everlasting righteousness" (Daniel 9:24) by reason of which they "shall not be ashamed nor confounded, world without end" (Isaiah 45:17). Well might the Holy Ghost command the church to exclaim, "Surely shall one say, In the Lord have I righteousness and strength" (Isaiah 45:24). I would only add, as a farther confirmation of the interest the church hath in Christ and the oneness there is between them, the church also is called "The LORD our righteousness" (Jeremiah 33:16) because her glorious Husband is so; thus proving her marriage by taking the name of her husband. â€“Robert Hawker
"THE ELECTION OF GRACE" "At this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace." (Romans 11:5) In every age there are those who belong to the Lord by electing grace. They were chosen unto salvation and redeemed by the blood of Christ. They must hear the true gospel and be brought by almighty, irresistible grace to repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Consider three things regarding the election of these people.
1. There was a time when they were elected unto salvation. In eternity past, God sovereignly and graciously chose a people to be saved from their sins. "But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth" (2 Thessalonians 2:13).
2. There comes a time when the elect find out they are the chosen of God. This was the first thing God taught Paul through the ministry of Ananias. "And he said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know His will (His redemptive will, how God saves sinners), and see the Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of His mouth" (Acts 22:14). How can we know we were included in "the election of grace?" "Make your calling and election sure" (2 Peter 1:10). All who look to Christ alone for life, salvation, forgiveness and righteousness may be assured they are the elect of God. The reason men believe on Christ is because they are effectually called by the Spirit to believe, and the reason they are called is because they are redeemed by Christâ€™s blood, and the reason they are redeemed is because they were chosen unto salvation in "the election of grace."
3. There comes a time when others find out we are the elect of God. Paul told the Thessalonian believers, "Knowing brethren beloved, your election of God" (1 Th 1:4). How could he be so confident they were the elect? "For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance" (verse 5). Paul observed that the gospel had become a delightful message to them and to him that confirmed that they were the elect of the Lord. He knew that the only ones who receive and rejoice in the glad tidings of salvation conditioned solely upon Jesus Christ and His substitutionary, justice-satisfying cross-death and resurrection are the elect of God. â€“Pastor Jim Byrd