The Lord will humble all of us! No flesh shall glory in His presence. Salvation is by the strength of God, not man, and we’ll add nothing to it. He’ll do it for Jesus’ sake, or not at all. It will be a work of His sovereign power.
Let us rest and cease from striving. It is false fire and human zeal, if it comes not from the Spirit.
“Upon all the cedars of Lebanon that are high and lifted up,
And upon all the oaks of Bashan;” vs13
It doesn’t matter how strong we are, or how much zeal we think we have. Salvation is God’s work through the Spirit. He is the initiator. He performs all the work. He works in us both to will and to do, so that no glory goes to man.
We strive in vain to add something to Jesus Christ. We must walk by faith. We glorify Him by believing that He is able.
“Upon all the high mountains,
And upon all the hills that are lifted up;
Upon every high tower,
And upon every fortified wall;” vs14-15
The strongest among us is nothing. Human willpower may get a professional sports contract or excel in religion, but it can do nothing in the kingdom of God! First, it must be unlocked, and then moved upon by the Spirit continually. Head knowledge is not enough: Unless the heart is touched by Christ, it is not God’s power, and the fruit is restlessness instead of love; it is the fleshly raven instead of the dove of the Spirit.
“The loftiness of man shall be bowed down,
And the haughtiness of men shall be brought low;
The Lord alone will be exalted in that day,” vs17
In the gospel, the Lord alone is exalted, and that’s why, “Salvation is of the Lord.” From start to finish - in regeneration and election - salvation begins with God. We overcome by the Spirit and not by human strength. We persevere by grace and never by will power. We need our wills acted upon constantly, and the deceitfulness of the flesh is strong. We are prone to wander back to the folly of trusting ourselves.
Brothers, let’s be free from the bondage. We are in the new covenant, where all is of the Lord. He is our great provider!
“Again, do you think that we excuse ourselves to you? We speak before God in Christ, but we do all things, beloved, for your edification.” vs19 Everything is to build others up. Paul does nothing for himself. He has learned the...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“Zion will be redeemed with justice, and her returners with righteousness.” vs27 The Church of the Lord Jesus will be saved. The elect will be gathered in. This remnant will be spared from Sodom, which includes false religion [Isa...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land;” vs19 Here are the conditions or the terms of salvation. We must be willing and obedient. We need a new will that enables us to obey. We must be born from heaven...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“I must go on boasting. Though there is nothing to be gained by it, I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord.” vs1 There's nothing to be gained by Paul boasting. He doesn't walk around puffed up, bragging about himself. He...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“For this reason I write these things while I am away from you, that when I come I may not have to be severe in my use of the authority that the Lord has given me for building up and not for tearing down.” vs10 The authority of the...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
"And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches." vs28 Care for the churches is one of the biggest things that bothers true preachers. We love them because Christ first loved us, and we are...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
"Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they the seed of Abraha? So am I.” Paul silences the boasting of the opposition. He’s got every qualification of heritage, but he counts it as nothing. None of these...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
"I will not be a burden, for I seek not what is yours but you. For children are not obligated to save up for their parents, but parents for their children." vs14 Paul saw himself as a father to children. This is how preachers ought to see...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“I repeat, let no one think me foolish. But even if you do, accept me as a fool, so that I too may boast a little. What I am saying with this boastful confidence, I say not as the Lord would but as a fool. Since many boast according to the...[ abbreviated | read entire ]