Christ did not die to make salvation available to sinners. I sure am glad of that because if salvation is merely available in Christ no son of Adam can be saved since by nature we will not and cannot come to Christ that we might be saved. Christ died to save His elect people from their sins (Matt. 1:21). Then if God is as He describes Himself (always doing His will) those people shall be eternally saved from their sin. I sure am thankful for salvation accomplished in Christ! That is the only salvation that will save a sinner like you and me.
WHAT AM I GOING TO DO NOW?
When the night of trial is the darkest and you can’t see anything but darkness and despair, set yourself to look to the Lord (just like Jonah did from the belly of that great fish). When you wonder, “What am I going to do now?” Trust and praise the Lord who is too wise to make a mistake and too good to do harm. When the way the Lord has ordained for you is so hard you think you can’t go on, trust the Lord who is all of your strength. Say with the psalmist, “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.” (Psalm 121:1)
“The God of Consolation” - Romans 15:5
As he is “the God of patience,” the Lord our God is “the God of consolation!” All true, real, solid comfort comes from Him. Our Lord Jesus Christ, His dear Son, is “the consolation of Israel.” He is our Comfort.
God the Holy Spirit is “the Comforter” sent down from heaven to comfort chosen, redeemed sinners. He comforts by the gospel in his gracious work of saving conviction (John16:7-11). He comforts believing sinners by the doctrines and promises of his Word, giving strong consolation to the heirs of promise, by the ordinances of divine worship which are the breasts of consolation to his children. And he comforts his people by faithful gospel preachers, the church’s “Barnabases,” her sons of consolation (Acts 4:36)
O Spirit of God, grant us “to be like minded one toward another.” Paul’s prayer here is that “the God of patience and consolation” might make us patient, longsuffering, and forgiving, and a source of comfort to one another, according to his own example in Christ (Ephesians 4:30 - 5:2).
When I have forgiven every wrong against me, have borne every hard word or thought, and have overlooked every weakness and comforted every fallen friend, I still have not endured one atom of what Christ bore for me and from me (Matthew 18:21-22).
This is how we “may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:6). God is glorified when, believing on his dear Son, we are united in his Son and seek to be of help and comfort to one another by our patience and forbearance with one another, and by our forgiveness of one another.
Pastor Don Fortner
IF EVERYONE WERE JUST LIKE ME
If everyone were just like me, what kind of church would this church be? If everyone followed my example in attendance, generosity, forgiveness, zeal for Christ’s glory, love for men, humility, deference, self-denial, encouragement, punctuality – what kind of church would this church be? With many, what a blessed place to be! With others I fear we would have to close the doors.