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Heshimu Colar | Lagos, Nigeria
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“YOU TURNED TO GOD” [1 Thess 1]
TUESDAY, APRIL 23, 2019
Posted by: The Gospel Fellowship Africa | more..
250+ views | 10+ clicks

“For they themselves report about us what kind of reception we had from you: how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.” vs9

The evidence that you are true believers, elected by God, and saved from the wrath to come, is that you turned from idols. You left them behind. You didn’t mingle them. You didn’t take some things of Christ and some things of false religion: You made a clean break by the power of the Spirit. He convinced you of the truth of the gospel, which no man can do, and it brought forth fruit, even, “your work of faith, labor of love, and endurance of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ [1 Thess 1:3].” You live like someone who knows God, proving you are godly.

1 Is this true for you? Has the gospel come to you with power, so that you know who Paul is - a messenger of God’s grace? Do you believe IN SPITE OF the persecutions you suffer?

I know in Nigeria and all over the world, people are deceived by a false message of no more troubles upon coming to Christ. True, you’ll have no more trouble with God, as you readily acknowledge yourself a sinner, and He forgives you, but you will have trouble with men, as you readily confess Christ, and they hate you. Paul says, “Knowing your election, brothers, loved by God. For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, in the Holy Spirit, and with much assurance. You know what kind of men we were among you for your benefit,and you became imitators of us and of the Lord when, in spite of severe persecution, you welcome the message with joy from the Holy Spirit [vs5-7].”

You must make a decision: either the world’s favor or the Son of God’s… either persecute the saints or be persecuted. The Spirit makes us able to say, “Yes”, to the gospel, and to acknowledge the man preaching to us is God’s servant - that he’s been sent with the message of the gospel to give us eternal life. The Spirit makes Christ real, causes us to see that He’s exalted by the Father, and it gives us power to turn from our sins and rejoice in being hated. This is the evidence of God’s elect: Do you have it?

2 God’s elect are special people! He says, “Knowing your election, brothers loved by God.” We’ve been chosen, not because we are better than others, but because God wanted to glorify Himself in sovereign mercy! He set His love upon us for unknown reasons, other than, for so it seemed good in His sight [Eph 1:4-5]. He had no one to answer to but gives eternal life to whom He pleases. No man is worthy; no man is able to come; all are hardened by the curse, but in rich and sovereign love, He ordained our deliverance. He loves us in a special that would not let us perish. He told Israel, “Because you are precious in My sight and honored, and I love you, I will give people in exchange for you and nations instead of your life [Isa 43:4].” It was special love - love that He doesn’t give to every man, though He calls all to receive.

3 The elect are specifically taught by God, and when we come across them, they receive the message tangibly [vs7-10]! Paul says, “As a result, you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia. For the Lord’s message rang out from yu, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place that your faith in God has gone out. Therefore, we don’t need to say anything, for they themselves report what kind of reception we had from you: how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.” They don’t only say, “Amen”, but they live it! Bro Gary Shepherd had this to say about God’s elect, compared to those who only talk:

“Many people dabble with the doctrines of grace. They like to discuss them and debate them. They like to read what men say about them. But in their heart, they have little regard for them. This is evidenced by what they don't do...The ‘doctrines of grace’ are but the ‘doctrine of Christ!’ Believed in the heart, they produce a commitment to Christ Jesus that cannot be hidden!” G.S.

They don’t only sing about loving Jesus, but they lay their life down and keep His commandments [John 14:15]. They don’t turn back: They persevere unto the end, holding onto Christ by the firm conviction that it is true, and I cannot deny it.

I may sin and look unsaved, but there is never a denial of the truth. I may fall, but I will rise again [Micah 7:8]. I may sleep, stumble, and turn back to my own hurt, but I’ll never lose the finished work of Christ, the new creation, or the indwelling of the Spirit: He may be grieved and hide Himself, but He will never leave nor forsake me.

→ Do you know the gospel of God’s grace in a saving way? Many know religion, having heard it from their ancestors and all around them. Those who know the true gospel, however, are a hated people but chosen by God. We turn from every other way and serve Christ only.

Heshimu K. Colar Heshimu K. Colar

Category:  Heshimu Colar

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