MY CONFIDENCE AND PLEA Tune to: "SWEET HOUR OF PRAYER" LM/DOUBLE Words by: JIM BYRD
1. How could a holy God forgive, And let this guilty sinner live; Since justice cried out for my death, And would be right to take my breath? Observe Godâ€™s wise and gracious scheme, He would this sinful man redeem; And this my confidence and plea, That when Christ died He died for me.
2. Behold the sacrificial Lamb, Redeemed by His own blood I am; Since on the cross He died for me, Justice demands that I go free. Who can a charge against me lay, Since Jesus washed my sins away? And this my confidence and plea, That when Christ died He died for me.
3. Homeward with joyfulness I go, And naught to justice do I owe; The curse of law I dread no more, Christâ€™s blood shall answer evermore. Though I am full of sinfulness, The Savior is my righteousness; And this my confidence and plea, That when Christ died He died for me.
SCRIPTURE READINGS: MORNING: PSALM 63:1-8 EVENING: JOHN 15:18-27
"O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in Thee." (Psalm 84:12)
JUSTIFICATION AND CHRIST'S RESURRECTION "Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification." (Romans 4:25) The manifold blessings flowing from the resurrection and ascension are not to be overlooked, but nowhere does Scripture teach justification by these. The one passage sometimes quoted to prove this declares the opposite (Romans 4:25), for the words truly translated run thus: "He was delivered because we had sinned, and raised again because of our justification." It was because the justifying work was finished that resurrection was possible. Had it not been so, He must have remained under the power of the grave. But the cross had completed the justification of the church. He was raised from the dead. Death could no longer have dominion over Him. The work was finished, the debt was paid, and the Surety went forth free. He rose not in order to justify us, but because we were justified. In raising Him from the dead, God the Father cleared Him from the imputed guilt which had nailed Him to the cross and borne Him down to the tomb. That resurrection in which we are one with Him does not justify us, but proclaims that we were justified - justified by His blood and death. â€“Horatius Bonar
PUBLIC WORSHIP Every believer is involved in many daily activities, some are necessary while others are frivolous. I suspect that like me, you sometimes neglect vital things - prayer, Bible reading, reflecting upon the goodness and greatness of the Lord - and your mind and energies are taken up with trivialities. Perhaps on occasion you murmur against Godâ€™s providence and maybe even doubt the reality of His grace and lose the joy of your salvation. When seasons of spiritual sadness occur, what is it that God frequently uses to restore our joy? Where does He direct our steps so that we will be refreshed? The Lord has graciously provided a place where we can meet with other believers to worship Him and be encouraged. It is when we join with our true family where the gospel is proclaimed that we realize the blessedness of the promise of Christ, "where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them" (Matthew 18:20). In the house of worship we meet in obedience to the Lord to extol His Name, hear the glad tidings of accomplished redemption and enjoy His presence. When we assemble together and honor the Lord, a wonderful thing happens to believers, we are spiritually uplifted. Certainly all who trust Christ worship privately, there is no question about that. I believe, however, that the most glorious times of worship are those we experience when we gather together to sing, read the Scriptures, join our hearts in prayer and then listen to Godâ€™s servant proclaim the gospel of the person and work of Christ our Lord. A worship service here is a foretaste of heaven itself where the people of God join together in never-ending worship and praise.
When David was unable to attend the place of worship and join others in honoring the Lord, he was so miserable that he even envied the birds that made their nests there. "My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God" (Psalm 84:2-3). Is it that way with you when you are unable to gather for public worship? â€“Pastor Jim Byrd