Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Just a Thought "21"

What are Satan’s ministers of righteousness trying to hide? The truth that we are righteousness is not tied to our works. They tie the word works to the word righteousness for our standing before God, which goes directly contrary to everything Paul has told us concerning his good news.

Righteousness cannot be found in the individual through performance and righteousness cannot be found in the law and Paul proved that righteousness cannot be found in religion. We were saved by believing what Paul had preached, we are sealed!

There is a vast difference in believing in God and believing on God for something. To believe in God is simply a matter of fact. To believe on God is to believe we must come to God in the precise manner which God prescribes, believing on God means taking God at his word.

There will be a requirement to escape the judgment of God, and it will not be by anything that we do. We must be justified on the basis of believing in what Christ has already done on our behalf, but unless we qualify what believing in God means, our belief in God will do us absolutely no good!

For anyone to think they are just before God through their performance, to think that they have perfected themselves with God through their behavior proves that they are a liar, and the truth is not in them.

All people are wrath-worthy, there is none good, no not even one, we have all gone out of the way, we all are continually coming short of the righteousness of God himself, and therefore we are in need of a justification that will come totally apart from anything that we do. God has kept the fingerprints of the guilt-worthy off the the righteousness he designed for the guilt-worthy!

Religion continues to make sin the issue, and then gives people a way to take care of that problem. How many have grown up with the idea that God has to make a decision whether or not to forgive us for our sins? God has not held back his wrath because he is happy with who we think we are, or because he is satisfied with who we are trying to become.

God has been long-suffering in holding back his wrath because he hopes that we will consider his goodness through what his son accomplished for us and flee to his grace. God wants us to change our mind about who we are from a fleshly perspective apart from Christ.

It is not Hell, Fire and Damnation preaching that changes people’s minds, that may scare people into making a temporary, at best, decision to do something with their lives. We are told that people need more law preaching in order to become better people, because if we preach God’s goodness, they are going to go out and sin all the more. 

Paul is telling us the precise opposite, it is the goodness of God that leads a person to a change of thinking; that draws that person to adopt what God has said is true in his word. The truth is our deeds do not determine our destiny, our faith determines our destiny.

Our deeds have nothing whatsoever to do with the security of our eternal position in Jesus Christ. That was accomplished for us apart from our deeds, good or bad. To preach grace is not to sanction sin, it’s to settle one’s trust in the Savior.

So those who preach grace are absolutely not preaching a license to sin, they are acknowledging sin for what it is and they are saying that the only solution for sin is to trust in the Savior and what he’s accomplished for us with his sacrifice.

It is obvious that God worked through visual evidences in connection with the Israelites, who required a sign during the time that God’s program with Israel was in progress. Yet Israel, for the most part, remained an unbelieving people.

Today, for the most part, we are also an unbelieving people. Instead of trusting in God’s word and resting in the glories of his grace that we’re shown through the word, we are even now continually looking for signs, continually looking for visual evidences of God’s presence and his approval in the day-to-day circumstance of our lives.

We are not the sign nation, and we have not become the assumers and fulfillers of God’s program with that sign-nation. Many think we have, that program has been placed on hold while God completes his plan and purpose for the saints of this dispensation.

We are the saints of a brand new program. While Israel walked by sight, we walk not by sight, but by faith. The focus today is no longer on the outward, but on the inward. God is not giving us those visual manifestations, we have a new apostle through whom we have been given God’s completed instruction.

We have not been promised that earthly kingdom, an earthly inheritance. God has prepared a heavenly habitation for the saints of this dispensation, our citizenship is in heaven. God in his infinite wisdom pre-decreed that every believer would be joined to his son, fully identified with his son.

God also pre-decided that we the believer would be blessed with all the blessings and privileges of an adopted adult son. God decided in advance that we the believer are to be the praise of the glory of his grace. God has pre-determined all these outcomes for us according to Ephesians 1:4-6.

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