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”I WILL OVERTURN, OVERTURN, OVERTURN IT”

 “I WILL OVERTURN, OVERTURN, OVERTURN IT”

THE THREEFOLD OVERTHROW OF SELF – Part 1

“I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him.” (Eze 21:27)

“And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold”. (Mat.24:12)

And Simon Peter answered and said,  THOU ART THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD.  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, AND UPON THIS ROCK I WILL BUILD MY CHURCH; AND THE GATES OF HELL SHALL NOT PREVAIL AGAINST IT (Matthew 16:16, 18).

“Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: FOR OUR GOD IS A CONSUMING FIRE (Hebrews 12:28,29).

I posted this article 10 years ago, then we thought things were so bad, but then where are we today. With all that is being said in recent times about Christianity, in some cases justifiably so: which can be attributed to the unchristian-like activities in the Church today a lot of Christians are beginning to ask doubtful questions. In this age we live in, it is very easy to start becoming unsteady in one’s walk with God; the pressure has always been there, not to talk of what we now seem to see on daily basis with regards to the falling away from the word of God.

So many believers are now beginning to ask the question “is all these Christian stuff real?

It is important to note that if the prayers of the saints cease what will happen?

Just like ten years ago, I spent some quality time with Lord regarding this situation this week and I am led to share this sermon by J. C. Philpot; it is an exposition of Ezekiel 21:7; although there have been other different lines of exposition of this Bible verse, Philpot looks at the verse from the angle of the overthrow of SELF, the number one enemy of man. I have heard many a messages on dealing with self, but this message gives practical ways of daily dealing with self. I will in later posts say one or two words on this, and we will then go back to our exposition on the book of Romans.

Please let us make some time out to pray through the prayer points listed before the Sermon on behalf of the body of Christ (The Church). Remember -WHAT SO EVER YOU SOW YOU WILL ALSO REAP.

Before we go on to the prayers and this message I will like to remind us of some facts:

Judgement will start in the house of God

“Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator“. (1Peter 4:16-19)

Even the great heroes of past made mistakes but later became great and faithful servants of the Lord.

“Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life“ (Rev. 2:10).

a.       Abraham, the father of the Hebrew nation, at one time worshipped other gods.
b.      David, the third King of Israel, although he committed adultery, became a man after God’s own heart.
c.       Paul, the great apostle of Jesus Christ, at one time had Christians arrested and killed.

God gives second chances

“Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” (Ezekiel 33:11).

“And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.” (Luke 15:20).

“This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1John 1:5)

In the 136th Psalm, 26 times it says, “His lovingkindness is everlasting”. (See also Ephesians 2:4; 1 Peter 1:3;1 John 1:9)

Our God is a consuming fire

“Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: FOR OUR GOD IS A CONSUMING FIRE” (Hebrews 12:28,29).

“And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:.” (Acts 17:30)

PRAYER POINTS  (Article follows after)

  1. Lord infuse us with your Holy purity.
  2. Lord empower us to discover Your holiness in our soul,
  3. Lord empower us to discover the manifestation of Your strict justice.
  4. Lord bring into our hearts a sense of Your unblemished purity.
  5. Lord empower us to discover the solemn revelation of Your wrath against all sin and transgression.
  6. Lord concerning our lives, overthrow self in us in its moral and immoral shapes, and bring it into wreck and ruin before You.
  7. Lord concerning our lives, overthrow self in us be it profane, righteous or holy or presumptious and bring it into wreck and ruin before You so that the doctrines of grace as made known by the Spirit can become sweet and suitable to us.
  8. Lord empower us to have a spiritual discovery of the deep pollution of our heart and nature before You.
  9. Lord, please repair any damage or searing in our conscience so that it can easy receive the application of your law.
  10. Lord empower us to continually receive the discovery to our conscience of the deep pollution that lurks in our carnal minds.
  11. Lord empower us to break up “the fountains of the deep,” and discover with power to our conscience; the truth of those words: “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.”
  12. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to realise deep down in our heart that there is nothing in self to please You with.
  13. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from seeking for holiness in self but to continually look unto the finished work of our Lord Jesus Christ at the Cross of Calvary.
  14. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from seeking for holiness in self but to be able to continually meditate upon Christ’s sanctification and see his glorious righteousness as it shines in the Scriptures as a truth which just fits in with our condition.
  15. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from seeking for holiness in self.
  16. Holy Spirit we pray that you will continually show our soul the blood of the atonement, and also continually sprinkle it upon our conscience, that we may continually blessedly experience a taste of God’s mercy.
  17. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from allowing self in us to make us slight Your solemn inward teaching, and to take hold of the doctrines of grace by the hand of nature, without waiting to have these heavenly truths applied, from time to time, by Your mouth to our heart.
  18. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from letting presumption creep upon us in such imperceptible and subtle ways, that we scarcely know we are in that delusive path.
  19. When this happens we pray O Lord that your will open the eye of our heart to see the precipice at the end of the road.
  20. Lord deliver us from pride and inordinate ambition which are not satisfied with being nothing, with occupying the place where You put us, and being in that posture where You Yourself sets us down.
  21. Lord deliver us from pride and inordinate ambition which makes us want to exalt our stature beyond the height which You have given us, adding a cubit to our dwarfish proportions.
  22. Lord make our soul a heap of ruins, and overturn and cast to the ground self in us; that we may continually know Your preciousness.
  23. Lord come with power and glory and grace and majesty into our soul, conscience and whole being, set up Your Kingdom, erect a temple for yourself and build up Your own throne of mercy and truth upon the ruins of self in us.
  24. Lord, we pray that at anytime self in us attempts to rebuild itself from it’s ruins you will infuse us with your Holy purity.
  25. Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to realise deep down in our inner man that self is a living principle; not a slaughtered and buried rebel, but a breathing antagonist to You the Lord of life and glory.
  26. Lord empower us to continually look into our heart, and discover that day by day we need this overturning work to be done afresh; and repeated in us again and again .

 

A Sermon DELIVERED ON LORD’S-DAY MORNING, JUNE 13, 1841, BY J. C. PHILPOT, AT ZOAR CHAPEL, GREAT ALIE STREET

“I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him.” -Eze 21:27

Before we enter into the spiritual and experimental meaning of this passage of Holy Writ, it may be desirable to advert for a few minutes to its literal signification, and to the circumstances under which these words were spoken by the Lord through his prophet Ezekiel.

These words were uttered, then, with reference to King Zedekiah, who at that time sat upon the throne of Judah.

Nebuchadnezzar had elevated him to the position which he then occupied; he had made him king, and, in making him king, he had exacted of him a solemn oath in the name of Jehovah, that he would be faithful to him as his sovereign  2Ch 36:13. Now, this solemn oath, which Zedekiah had taken, he perfidiously broke, and rebelled against his master the king of Babylon, and gave his allegiance to the king of Egypt. It was, then, the breaking of this solemn oath, which he had taken in the name of the Lord, that so provoked the righteous anger of Jehovah against him; and, therefore, in this chapter he says: “And thou profane, wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, thus saith the Lord God, remove the diadem and take off the crown” Eze 21:25,26. The Lord here remonstrates with him, and reproaches him for the violation of that solemn oath which he had taken; he calls him a “profane wicked prince,” because he abode not by the solemn covenant which he had made in his name, agreeably to those words Eze 17:18,19, – “Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape.

Therefore thus saith the Lord God, As I live, surely mine oath that he hath despised, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head.” But the Lord was resolved, not merely to remove this “profane wicked prince” from the throne, but he was determined to overturn the throne itself; not only to pull down this perjured king from the position which he then occupied, but to overthrow the kingdom also of Judah, by a complete overturning of it from its very foundation. And, therefore, when he had said: “And thou profane, wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, thus saith the Lord God, remove the diadem, and take off the crown,” he then goes on in the words of the text: “I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more” that is, “it shall be no more” as a kingdom -it shall exist no more in its present state, “until he come whose right it is” that is the king of Zion, Jesus, the Lord of life and glory; “and I will give it him;” in other words, there shall be no more a king in Judah -the kingdom shall no longer stand upon its present base; no temporal monarchy shall be there known, until he come whose right it is, and he shall set up his throne, not literally in Jerusalem, -but spiritually in Zion, that kingdom which is “righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost;” and I with my own hand, “I will give it him.”

But having just adverted to the literal signification, we come now, with God’s blessing, to the spiritual and experimental meaning of the words; and in so doing, we shall doubtless observe some analogy betwixt the two cases. If there were no analogy, there would be no foundation for the spiritual and experimental interpretation founded upon the passage. If I could trace no resemblance betwixt the cases, all such experimental and spiritual interpretation would be merely fanciful and uncertain; it would be upon a wrong basis, and would stand upon an insecure foundation. And, therefore, I shall endeavour to show, before I enter into the spiritual and experimental meaning of the passage, that there is an analogy betwixt the literal and spiritual interpretation.

The people of Israel were a people of God’s own choice, and as such were typical of the elect of God, whom he has chosen in Christ before all worlds. But this people swerved from their allegiance; they rebelled against the statutes and ordinances of God, which he had given them by the mouth of his servant Moses; they said, “Give us a king to judge us, like all the nations,” and in demanding a king, the Lord said, by the mouth of Samuel 1Samuel 8:7, “That they had rejected him that he should not reign over them.” This demanding, then, of a king that they might become like other nations was an act of daring rebellion on their parts, whereby they swerved from their allegiance to the “KING of kings and LORD of lords.” The Lord, however, suffered them to continue under this kingly government until a certain time, until the reign of Zedekiah, when he overturned and utterly reduced this kingdom which they had set up to wreck and ruin.

Is there not here an analogy and a resemblance betwixt the typical Israel and the spiritual Israel? As the typical Israel were chosen nationally that the Lord should be their king, so the spiritual Israel were chosen in Christ before all worlds, that he might reign in them.

But as the literal Israel swerved from their allegiance by setting up another king than God, so the elect Israel swerved from their allegiance by falling in Adam; and by becoming subjects of sin and self, fell into a state of rebellion and alienation from God. There is an analogy, then, betwixt the literal kingdom of Israel, and the dominion of sin and self in the hearts of the elect before they are called by sovereign grace. The Lord then says, “I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more until he come whose right it is,” that is, I will make this kingdom of sin and self a heap of ruins; I will reduce it to a wreck; I will overturn it from its foundations, and upon the ruins of this kingdom, I will build up another. “I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more a kingdom as it was before, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him.”

Upon this resemblance, then, I hope, with God’s blessing, this morning, to build up a spiritual and experimental interpretation of the text, and to show, if the Lord enable me, how it applies to the work of grace upon the hearts of God’s people.

Now, if we look at the text, without making any formal divisions, we shall find that it consists of two leading branches.

I. The work of overturning which is thrice repeated; and then
II. What takes place in the soul, when the overturning is complete.

“I will overturn, overturn, overturn it;” that is one branch of the Spirit’s work. “Until he come whose right it is;” there is another branch of the Spirit’s teaching in the soul, making Christ experimentally and spiritually known.

I. The most striking feature in these words is, that the Lord repeats three times the expression, “I will overturn it.” It may indeed be said with respect to this repetition of the words three times, that it may signify the positiveness and certainty of God’s determination.
Just in the same manner as, in the vision of Peter, we read, “This was done thrice, and the vessel was received up again into heaven,” in order to show the certainty of the vision -to make more clear and manifest what was the will and purpose of God.

And so, perhaps, the circumstance of the expression being repeated three times, “I will overturn, overturn, overturn it,” may be intended to convey with greater authority the certainty of it -that God by solemnly declaring it three times over, expresses thereby the positiveness of it in his own mind. But still I believe, if we come to look at it in a closer point of view, and trace it out according to the teachings of God the Holy Ghost in the hearts of God’s people, we shall find that it is literally true, –that the repetition of it three times does not merely intend to express the certainty of God’s overthrow of self in the soul, but that there are three distinct occasions -three clear, positive, and direct overturnings of self, and bringing it into utter ruin, in order to the setting up of Christ in his glory and beauty upon the wreck and ruins of the creature. And it is remarkable that there were three distinct overturnings of the kingdom of Judah, and a carrying of them into captivity three different times, as well as three distinct restorations; the first was the overthrow of Jehoiakim in the fourth year of his reign, the second that of Jehoiachin in the eighth year of his reign, and the third and last that of King Zedekiah, which the Lord here denounces by the mouth of his prophet, 2Ki 24:1,2 2Ki 24:12 2Ki 25:5,6

Then what is the first overturning which takes place in the heart, when God the Holy Ghost begins the work of grace there?

Where does the Spirit of God find us? He finds us, as the apostle speaks, “alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in us, because of the blindness of our hearts;” he finds us “dead in trespasses and sins,” by nature the “children of wrath even as others;” he finds us under the dominion of sin in some of those various shapes which sin assumes. Then, in order to the setting up of the kingdom of God in the soul, there must be an overthrow of the rule and reign of sin. Just as in the vision which Daniel saw, the stone cut out of the mountain without hands, smote the image upon his feet, and brake in pieces, not only the feet of iron and of clay, but all the other component parts of that image, the gold and the silver and the brass, and was set up upon the wreck and ruins of that image; so the kingdom of God is founded upon the wreck and ruin of self. There is no alliance betwixt unhumbled self and Christ, no more than there is concord between Christ and Belial. Christ never enters into confederacy so as to go halves with the creature, or takes self into partnership; he erects his blessed kingdom of righteousness and peace upon the wreck and ruin of self, and all the strength, wisdom, and righteousness of man must become, as it is said in Daniel, “like the chaff of the summer threshing-floors,” before the kingdom of God is blessedly revealed in the heart, and there made experimentally known.

Overturn No. 1 Profanity
1. The first prominent feature of self is in some cases profane self.

That is, many of God’s elect, before they are called by the blessed Spirit, are living in open profanity, in drunkenness, swearing, adultery, and the barefaced practice of notorious sins. But whenever the Spirit of God begins to work in the heart, he overturns profane self, that is, he brings such solemn convictions into the conscience -he shoots such arrows from the bow of God into the soul, that self in its profane shape is overcome and overthrown thereby. And there is every reason to doubt, whether God has began a work of grace upon that man’s heart, in whose conscience the arrows of conviction have not been lodged, so as to cut the sinews, and let out the life-blood of profane self. If a man, professing the doctrines of grace, can live in any known sin, and without pangs of conscience and anguish of spirit before God, there is every reason to believe that the Spirit of God has never set up his court of judgment in that man’s breast. If profane self has never been arraigned at that bar- has never been condemned and imprisoned, there is no reason to believe, that the Spirit of God has come as the Spirit of judgment, and the Spirit of burning into that man’s heart.

But there are others of God’s elect, who, when he takes them in hand, are not wallowing in profane and open wickedness, and yet are living under the dominion of sin in other shapes -people who are what is called moral outwardly, but who are immoral inwardly; people who are not given up to the excesses of open riot, but are still living under the dominion of sin in other forms; who with a fair demeanour externally are still “alienated from the life of God, through the ignorance and blindness of their heart;” who are under the reign and rule of self; who have no fear of God before their eyes, no spiritual sense of his heart-searching presence, and no desire to know and believe in, worship or love him. Now, these people need just as much that self should be overturned in its moral shape in them, as that self should be overturned in its immoral shape in the others. So long as God is barred out of the heart, it matters little, as far as salvation is concerned, whether a man is living in profaneness or in what is called morality. There is no life in that man’s soul, no spiritual work, nothing in him of a heavenly birth so as to bring him into any acquaintance with God. Self still reigns and rules, and all the stronger from its very morality. It must, therefore, be cast down and overturned from its throne, and become a wreck and a ruin before God.

Well, but what is the instrument -the strong and powerful lever which the Holy Ghost applies to overthrow self in its profane shape, and self in its moral shape? The spirituality of the law in the conscience,the discovery of God’s holiness in the soul, the manifestation of his strict justice, and the bringing into the heart a sense of his unblemished purity. Now, the bare letter of the law cannot overthrow self, either immoral self or moral self; but the spirituality of God’s law, the coming of the commandment with power, the solemn revelation of the wrath of God against all sin and transgression -this, in the hands of the Spirit is an effectual lever, to overthrow self in its moral shape as well as in its immoral shape, and bring it in to wreck and ruin before God, -that is to say, it exists, but it exists in ruins. The word “overturn” is applicable to a building which is overthrown by some stroke of lightning, or by some violent concussion, as the shock of an earthquake. It is overturned, not removed; not one stone is taken away, but the building lies in ruins. So with respect to sinful self; it is overthrown from its lofty position, hurled down from its standing; the building is no longer a complete edifice as before; it does not retain its former proportions; it is no longer a temple with distinct apartments, shrines, and altars, an abode swept and garnished for Satan; but though no one stone is removed utterly away, yet there remaineth not one stone upon another which is not thrown down. The difference between the building now, and the building then, is that that is now a ruin -a heap of confused rubbish -which formerly was a complete edifice.
Here, then, is a soul which stands overturned before God; a wreck and ruin before “the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” But what will a man do when he is reduced to these circumstances? Why, he will begin to build, and will endeavour to set up a temple in which he believes God will take pleasure, of which he may approve, and which shall, in some measure, recommend him to Jehovah’s favour. That is the immediate feeling of every convinced sinner whose profaneness lies as a load of guilt on his conscience, and which has fallen into a heap of ruins before God. His object is to do something to blunt the edge of convictions in his conscience, to gain the favour of Jehovah, and to escape “the wrath to come.” Now, usually, I believe, men take different roads according to the measure of light in their judgment.

Where a man has never sat under the truth -where he has never heard of Christ’s righteousness and salvation through the propitiation of the Son of God, his immediate recourse is to the law of works, that he, by strict obedience to its demands, may work out a righteousness which shall satisfy and please God. But where a man has had his judgment in some measure enlightened; where, –for instance, he has sat under truth, and heard of the blood of Christ as the only propitiation for sin, and of Christ’s righteousness as the only way whereby he can stand justified before God, he seems in a manner cut off from the law of works, as having this conviction in his mind, “I can never make up a righteousness by the law of works, and, therefore, to flee to it for refuge will be utterly ineffectual.” He adopts another course, which is to set up what is called holiness. When I was convinced of sin, and “brought in guilty before God,” I had too much light in my judgment to fly to the Mosaic covenant of works. My judgment being well informed, I knew very well that legal righteousness could not stand me in any stead before God as a way of acceptance. My recourse was rather to turn the Gospel into law, and procure what is called holiness; not to go to the law of Moses for righteousness, but to the Gospel for holiness; not to try to obey the commandments in the Old Testament, but to seek to fulfil the precepts of the New; and by making myself spiritually-minded, by reading the Scriptures and prayer, to clothe myself in the character given in the New Testament of a Christian. This is indeed the worst of legality, for it is perverting the Gospel into law; but still it seems a different path from running to the Mosaic law of works for salvation. The man, then, whose judgment is in some measure informed, will try hard, perhaps, to make himself holy, to be spiritually-minded, to fix his affections upon God, to renounce everything which is contrary to the Word of God as spoken by the mouth of Christ, and thus to seek in some way to make himself a Christian, and then to obtain access to God by that Christianity. This is what Romaine calls somewhere, “self-righteousness new christened holiness.” Here he is, then, embarked upon this course, to become holy and spiritually-minded, to serve God, to obey his precepts, to read his Word, to join his people, to come out from the world, and with the utmost power and strongest bent of his soul, to become a Christian indeed.

Overturn No. 2 False Holiness or Mock Spirituality
2. Now, there must be as much an overturning of this self-righteousness,whether in its strictly legal shape, or “new christened holiness,” as there must be an overturning of a man’s profanity. 

The object of the overturning is to overthrow self -self setting itself up in opposition to Christ. And, therefore, be it profane self, it must be overturned; or be it righteous self, it must be overturned; or be it holy self, it must be overturned. Self in all its shapes, forms, and guises, must be overturned and brought to a heap of ruins, that Christ may be exalted wholly and solely upon the ruins of self. A second overturning, then, is necessary, an overthrow of righteous or holy self. And what is the Lord’s lever to overturn this second temple, built out of the ruins of the first, but not “the place of big rest,” as being still the work of men’s hands? A spiritual discovery of the deep pollution of our hearts and natures before him. Profanity is overturned by the application of the law with power to the conscience; but this false holiness, this mock spirituality, is overturned by the discovery to our consciences of the deep pollution that lurks in our carnal minds; this is more or less the breaking up of “the fountains of the deep,” and discovering with power to the conscience the truth of those words: “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.” As we try, then, to be holy, sin rises up from the depths of our carnal mind, and overturns that fabric which we are seeking to erect. Every thought now appears polluted with sin -every word in some way tainted with corruption -every action infected with evil, so that we fall down before God with self-abhorrence and self-loathing, and feel that there is not a word in our mouth, or an action in our hands, with which sin is not intermixed, which inward iniquity has not defiled, and for which, therefore, we do not feel condemned and self-abhorred before God. Here, then, is a man who stands before God, not merely with profane self a heap of ruins, but also with righteous self and holy self a heap of ruins too. But when profane self, righteous self, and holy self, have been thus overthrown, the doctrines of grace as made known by the Spirit now become sweet and suitable. Having no holiness in self, Christ’s sanctification becomes meditated upon finding nothing in self to please God with, the blood of the atonement becomes opened up as a doctrine which is sweet and suitable to our case; being destitute of creature-righteousness, Christ’s glorious righteousness shines in the Scriptures as a truth which just fits in with our condition. The Spirit, then, brings home the doctrine of election with some power to the heart and some sweetness to the conscience; he shows the soul in some faint measure the blood of the atonement, and as he sprinkles it upon the conscience, a taste of his mercy is blessedly experienced. He brings Christ’s righteousness near, and as the soul gets a sight of that righteousness by the eye of faith, it rests therein, and feels a sweet satisfaction in that righteousness, and utterly discards its own.

Overturn No. 3 Presumptuous Self
3. And now let us trace a little what course self will steer.

Why, this restless wretch now runs in another channel, which is to slight the solemn inward teaching of God, and to take hold of the doctrines of grace by the hand of nature, without waiting to have these heavenly truths applied, from time to time, by the mouth of God to our hearts. And as some sweetness has been felt in them, there seems to be some warrant for so doing. But presumption creeps upon us in such imperceptible and subtle ways, that we scarcely know we are in that delusive path before we find a precipice at the end of the road. And what has led us there? Our pride and ambition, which are not satisfied with being nothing, with occupying the place where God puts us, and being in that posture where he himself sets us down. We must needs grasp at something beyond God’s special teachings in the soul; we must needs exalt our stature beyond the height which God himself has given us, adding a cubit to our dwarfish proportions.

Here, then, is the third form of self which is to be overturned, as much as the two preceding forms, and that is presumptuous self, so that we have self in its three bearings: first, profane self; secondly, righteous self; and thirdly, presumptuous self. Profane self was self in ignorance of the doctrines of grace at all; righteous self was self in ignorance of these doctrines as spiritually made known to the heart; and presumptuous self is self which after the soul had tasted some measure of these doctrines, and had felt something of their sweetness and their power, secretly and imperceptibly thrust it beyond its real standing into a carnal resting upon them. Well, then, self in all its three forms -self in profanity, self in self-righteousness, and self in presumption -must be overturned in a man, that he may be a wreck before God and a heap of ruins, so that one stone shall not stand upon another; the former proportions and harmony of the building lost and gone; the proud columns which supported it fallen; and roof and walls mingled together undistinguished amidst heaps of rubbish, because the Lord “has stretched over it the line of confusion and the stones of emptiness.”

II. But we come now to the second part of the text, which is, the setting up of the kingdom of God on the ruins of self. “I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him.”

There is one, then, to come, “whose right it is;” there is a king who has a right to the throne, and to the allegiance of his subjects; a right to all that they are and to all that they have. But whence has he gained this right? “Until he come whose right it is.” It is his right then, first, by original donation and gift, the Father having given to the Son all the elect. “Here am I,””All that the Father giveth me shall come to me.” says Jesus, “and the children that thou hast given me.” Then, so far as we are his, Jesus has a right to our persons; and in having a right to our persons, he has, by the same original donation of God the Father, a right to our hearts and affections. But he has another right, and that is by purchase and redemption, he having redeemed his people with his own blood –having laid down his life for them, and thus bought and purchased them, and so established a right to them by the full and complete price which he himself paid down upon the cross for them. This twofold right he exercises every time that he lays a solemn claim to any one of the people whom he has purchased. And this claim he lays when the blessed Spirit comes into the soul to arrest and apprehend a vessel of mercy, and bring it to his feet, that he may be enthroned as King and Lord in its affections. For be it remembered, that the possession of the heart, with all its affections, is his right; and “his glory he will not give to another,” his property he will not allow to pass into other hands; he is not satisfied with merely having a right to the persons of his dear people, he must have their hearts; and in exercising his right to their affections, he will reign and rule supreme, allowing no rival, admitting no cooperation with self in any shape or form, but he himself to be established as King and Lord there. Then where is the soul before he comes into it in power, in sweetness, in beauty, in preciousness? What and where is it? A heap of ruins. And no man ever knew much of the preciousness of Christ, whose soul was not a heap of ruins, and in whom self had not been overturned and cast to the ground. Nay; no man ever ardently panted that the Lord of life and glory should visit his heart with his salvation, should come in the power of his resurrection, in the glory of his righteousness, in the preciousness of his presence -no man ever spiritually desired, sighed, cried, groaned, sued, and begged for the manifestation of Christ to his soul, who was not a ruined wretch before God, and in whom self had not been overturned so as to be a desolate heap, so overthrown that all the power of man could not put any one stone in its place, or rebuild the former edifice.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, please multiply your glorious riches in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto us and fill us with the knowledge of your will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding so that we may be able to resist and desist from seeking for holiness in self  but to be able to continually meditate upon Christ’s sanctification and see his glorious righteousness as it shines in the Scriptures as a truth which just fits in with our condition.

Meanwhile, seek to be set free from God’s wrath today and seek the righteousness that really counts:

Most Importantly!!!!!

 You might say – “Why do I have to know and experience this Jesus you are going on about?” Here is why, when and how you can get to know Him.

Admit your spiritual need.

We all are sinners: nobody likes that title “SINNER”, but the bible says in Romans 3:23 that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”.

What is the result of sin?

In Romans 6:23 we read “The wages of sin is death…” in other words, every sin is another step towards death. One thing that we need to remember is that God never sends anyone to hell; one can send himself there by rejecting the truth.

Since we can never measure up to God’s standards by our own strength; God has reached out to mankind.

In Romans 5:8 we read, “God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”. It is Jesus, after all, who is the source of life’s greatest high.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17).

What must a person do to accept this gift?

Simply receive it! Matthew 11:28 states –“come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me…for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks, seeking entrance into your life to give you peace, change you for the best. John 1:12 says: “For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God”.

If you haven’t already received Christ as your Saviour, don’t put it off another day! Take time right now to reflect on the state of your life, how does Romans 3:23 apply to you? Ask God to empower you to see the true state of your heart – “The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) then when enabled, invite Jesus into your life. Confess your sins. Receive His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. You could pray something like this:

Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner in need of a Saviour. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank You for giving me eternal life. Help me to live my life in a way that pleases You, for whatever time You give me here on earth. I look forward to living forever in Heaven with You. Amen.

An Introduction To The Book Of Romans

Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God

Trust and Obey – Part 8

An Introduction To The Book Of Romans

 While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey.

We are moving briefly (if I may say so) to align some of our posts from our previous webpage with this topic we are dealing with, Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God. we hope to do this in order to show the links of the book of Romans with the centrality of the Christian faith – The Cross of Jesus at Calvary. We Think that a good understanding or grasp of these resources on the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is an absolute necessity for one to be a able understand what we will be discussing in the book of Romans. These resources can be found on this site and also at SAB21st or FACEBOOK

A. THE BOOK OF ROMANS IN THE NEW TESTAMENT.

In my own Christian walk, I have found that the Book of Romans is one of the most relevant books of the bible because of it’s relevance to our world today. It is also that part of the New Testament that brings to reality, the life and the finished work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in our everyday living. That life and work which brings down the barrier between God and man; and brings the only solution to the innumerable problems caused by man’s pride of thinking  “I can go it all the way” without God”; as it demonstrates the effects of God’s truth upon mankind. The gospel of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, is that solution.

Paul is the author of Romans but he did not write it himself as seen in Rom.16:22. “I, Tertius, the writer of this letter, greet you in the Lord”. This is the only mention of Tertius in scripture. He actually wrote the book of Romans from the Apostle Paul’s dictation. This letter was written in commercial bustling city of Corinth, Greece (The London or New York of that time); and sent between A.D. 55 and 58. Paul was at the tail end of his third missionary journey at the time of its writing.

Although Paul had never personally been to Rome before, he wrote this letter to the saints in Rome (1:7) whom he had never met, which informs his longing to visit them (1:11). He was also not the founder of this church, so he definitely had written the letter through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The keywords and phrases to get familiar with in Romans include; Law, sins, Sin, Blood of Jesus, Cross, grace, repentance, faith, justice, flesh, spirit, justification, sanctification, eternal purpose, Glory of God etc.

B. WHEN AND WHY WAS IT WRITTEN

Paul wrote the letter to introduce himself and communicate his love for them and his desire to visit them (1:9-12). He hoped to go eventually to Spain and wanted to first fellowship and minister to them in Rome, with the hope that they will assist him in his ministry in Spain. For the present he must return to Jerusalem for he is taking gifts for the relief of the poor brethren there. Toward this end, he desires their prayers for God’s blessings (15:23-32).

We can see the fearlessness of the writing as guided by the Holy Spirit as he was forthright with issues he picked up with the Romans despite the fact that he already knew that he was going to need their help for his ministry in Spain.

C. NOTABLE THEMES AND TESTIMONIES OF THE BOOK

1. TRUTHFULNESS OF CHRISTIANITY. Augustus, a philosopher and teacher who lived between the fourth and fifth centuries came under conviction concerning the truthfulness of Christianity. He like the scientist or well off bankers of his day (even today as you will see in our cities) as he described in the 8th book of his “confession” similar to “Cityboy: Beer and Loathing in the Square Mile” by Geraint Anderson which describes life within the square mile of the city of London – the bankers’ haven. Despite these bouts of conviction from the Holy Spirit He kept putting off the chance of confessing, renouncing and turning away from his sinful ways. So one day while he was in Milan Italy he heard a child singing in Italian

“Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarrelling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires”.

This was the beginning of the ministry of St Augustine as he was later known. After this experience he wrote in 8th book of his “confession”: “No further would I read, nor did I need; for instantly, as the sentence ended—by a light, as it were, of security infused into my heart—all the gloom of doubt vanished away.” “take, Read” “take, Read”. As he had never had a song like that before he taught this could be a message from God (how so religious of him!!): So he rushed to the nearest copy of the bible he could lay his hands on and opened at random. The first words that met his gaze were in Romans13:13-14:

“Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” (Romans 13:13-14)

2. FUNDAMENTALITY OF “RIGHTEOUSNESS BY FAITH” TO CHRISTIANITY

This letter to the Romans, just as it deals with the morally deficient individual, so does it deal with the morally astute person, it deals very much with those who want to please God by their own works. This was the case with Martin Luther, the father of the protestant reformation; for Luther, instead of growing closer to God – He felt further away. Instead of getting to love God more – He hated Him more for requiring apparently impossible standard of righteousness in him as a believer and all human beings in general. He gradually developed a secret anger against God. In his desperation, by grace he found the book of Romans and in chapter 1 verse 17 Luther read:

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith”.

By reading this Luther realised that it was not his own righteousness that God was looking for, but the righteousness of Christ that is available to anyone who cares to ask for it. He discovered that we do not have any righteousness of our own to bring to God because we are bankrupt sinners. We receive God’s righteousness, not through any works of our own, but by faith alone in the finished work of Christ. When we put our faith in Christ, we take God at His word and believe what He says about us and His saving grace in Christ. Luther said:

I had no love for that holy and just God who punished sinners. I was filled with secret anger against Him. I hated Him. . . . But when I learned how the justification of the sinner proceeds from the free mercy of our Lord through faith, then I felt born again like a new man.

Luther, like Paul, discovered that Christianity is Jesus Christ, that it is not about the philosophy of men, like Paul said in his letter to Timothy:

 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do. Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.”         (1 Timothy 1:3-5)

Like the first and most important commandment tells us:

LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND

So;

Do you love the Lord Jesus Christ?

Do you love Him with all your heart?

Do you love Him with all your being?

Does He occupy your thoughts?

Is He the centre of your attention?

Do you speak often of Him?

There is nothing like being conquered by His love. It lifts you out of the “shallow and selfish, constantly shifting ebbs and flows of cultural sands” of our day. May our very person, like the “man in Christ,” be filled with more and more of Him

“who loved me and gave Himself for me”

because

“You are not your own; you were bought at a price”

Paul was in love with Christ, and that is the only way you can explain him. He had been conquered and captivated by the living Lord Jesus Christ. I believe with all my heart that when He has conquered our hearts, we will love Him the same way and then and only then will our contemporaries say of us, “There is a man, or there is a woman, or there is a young person in Christ.”

The question now is;

Is this ancient writing now relevant in our 21st century jet set, Internet propelled, Godless, greedy, self righteous society drenched in human blood?

How does this apply to our very existence or survival- can we expect this letter to meet our needs today?

The answer to this is yes and I say again yes

because as JM Boice puts it:

“Christianity has been the most powerful, transforming force in human history – and the book of Romans is the most basic, most comprehensive statement of true Christianity”

Looking at the Political background at the time Paul wrote the letter; the first century church was under Roman rule. God used Roman rule (epitomised by the world political, economic and religious set-up of today) to protect, to consolidate, to extend, and to test His young church. The city itself was prosperous and growing. Working class, slaves (just like the employment laws of today that guarantees maximum profit for the employer often to the detriment of employees and their families) and also aristocracy lived in Rome. Economic subsidies, wealth, poverty, entertainment, government, public buildings, parks, famous people, military, and intrigue filled the city.

Nero was the emperor at this time. He ruled from A.D. 54-68. He became the emperor at age 17 and committed suicide at age 31. Just like today (especially in the western world) There was a reasonable decent standard of living (for some, more that enough for them and generations of their children) which tends to make a man think that he is self sufficient and able to “go it” all the way without God, a gradual move to the situation Paul describes in chapter 1 verses 28-32:

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”

D. OVERVIEW OF ROMANS

Book of Romans demonstrates the effects of God’s truth upon mankind. The heart of this letter is the barrier between God and man and the solution to this problem.

The gospel of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, is the solution.

The gospel message is that God’s righteousness is offered to mankind based on the death and resurrection of Christ; man receives God’s righteousness by faith in Christ alone. So in the course of our study of the book of Romans we will be looking at God’s truth in these categories:

Eternal Purpose: Greeting and introduction:

Christ as the theme, God’s righteousness and man’s unrighteousness, (Romans 1-3).

God gives His righteousness through faith alone, (Romans 4-5).

The gospel:

We Can Live the Normal everyday Christian Life? (Romans 6-8).

Universality / Outworking of Christianity in individual and national life:

God’s Plan for Israel, (Romans 9-11). Day to Day Christian Living, (Romans 12-16).

In our next post we will have a look at

GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE – Foresight of The Master Planner

 Most Importantly!!!!!

 You might say – “Why do I have to know and experience this Jesus you are going on about?” Here is why, when and how you can get to know Him.

Admit your spiritual need.

We all are sinners: nobody likes that title “SINNER”, but the bible says in Romans 3:23 that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”.

What is the result of sin?

In Romans 6:23 we read “The wages of sin is death…” in other words, every sin is another step towards death. One thing that we need to remember is that God never sends anyone to hell; one can send himself there by rejecting the truth.

Since we can never measure up to God’s standards by our own strength; God has reached out to mankind.

In Romans 5:8 we read, “God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”. It is Jesus, after all, who is the source of life’s greatest high.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17).

What must a person do to accept this gift?

Simply receive it! Matthew 11:28 states –“come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me…for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks, seeking entrance into your life to give you peace, change you for the best. John 1:12 says: “For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God”.

If you haven’t already received Christ as your Saviour, don’t put it off another day! Take time right now to reflect on the state of your life, how does Romans 3:23 apply to you? Ask God to empower you to see the true state of your heart – “The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) then when enabled, invite Jesus into your life. Confess your sins. Receive His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. You could pray something like this:

Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner in need of a Saviour. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank You for giving me eternal life. Help me to live my life in a way that pleases You, for whatever time You give me here on earth. I look forward to living forever in Heaven with You. Amen.

Repentance In Christian Conversion

Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God

 Trust and Obey – Part 7a

Click on Image for presentation

Repentance In Christian Conversion

While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey.

In this series we have been looking at the first stanza of the hymn, Trust and Obey by John Henry Sammis as part of our mini-series “Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God” In previous posts we have looked at God’s good will, His original plan of His eternal purpose Ultimately being, PLAN A  – The Glory of God  –  We saw that it is safe to say that His good will, His eternal purpose, is a plan to ultimately, bring us to His Glory, with provision made for perceived blunders we will make along the way –The Gospel of Christ Jesus.  We then started on this Journey of Regeneration– God’s Provisions & Man’s Acts. We then looked at Propitiation – It Is Finished; before that, Redemption then   Justification as part of God’s Regeneration  of man.

We then stopped to have a look at the work of the Holy Spirit in this eternal purpose of God especially the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of man. We looked at this from the perspective of the specific activities of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of man – His activities in the eternal Purpose of God and His in bringing life to man’s deadened conscience through quickening of the human spirit.

The Holy Spirit & Regeneration of Man. How God, According To His Will By The Holy Spirit:

Part 1 – Confirms Man As A Sinner                                                                                                    The Components of Man (Body, Soul & Spirit); Heart of Man; SELF & The Heart of Man; Conviction in unregenerate Man; What is the law? (At Salvation); The law & Grace?

 Part 2a – Removes His Sins and Their Consequences                                                                     The purpose conviction of sin is CHANGE OF HEART; CHANGE OF HEART! in unregenerate man as a result of conviction?; Product of conviction in an un-regenerated man; The purpose of conviction of sin is to change the heart; Grace From Cross At Calvary; Regeneration of the spirit (Quickening); A Quickened Heart (At Salvation)

 We are now here;

 Slide3

Repentance In Christian Conversion

Introduction                                                                                                                                               

Knowing And Approving Does Not Equate To Salvation

The Assurance of Salvation

The Regeneration Before The Conversion Process – QUICKENING

The Conversion Process

Repentance

Heart of Man -A Free & Wholesome Conscience For Repentance

 In our last post we saw that regeneration of the spirit (Quickening) is entirely an act of consistent, instantaneous, unperceived work of the Grace (unmerited favour) of God. MAN HAS NO PART TO PLAY IN IT;

“That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” (John 3:6)

“The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8)

We saw that Quickening is made possible through the work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ at Calvary:

“And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit”. (1 Corinthians 15:45)

“For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will.” (John 5:21)

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:2)

 Knowing And Approving Does Not Equate To Salvation

The fact that one has even been able to read or hear about God’s plan of salvation does not in mean itself that the person is converted.

Slide11

 Regeneration (even after the quickening of the Holy Spirit) does not automatically translate into conversion. The quickening is meant to trigger an earnest seeking of the kingdom of God. Earnest Seeking through repentance towards God and faith in Jesus IS A MUST to move ahead:

REPENTANCE TOWARD GOD;  FAITH TOWARD OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST     (Acts 20:21)

How ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God. (1 Thessalonians 1:9b)

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. (Phil. 2:12b-13)

.We can see example of knowledge without conversion in the case of king Agrippa :

King Agrippa, believest thou the prophets? I know that thou believest. (But then) Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian. (Acts 26:27-28 emphasis added)

In fact, Familiarity Breeds Contempt!!!

“There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. (But then) Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. (John 3:1-3 emphasis added)

Knowledge & Approval Can Even Breed Hostility

Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind. If this man were not of God, he could do nothing. (But then) They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out. (John 9:32-34 emhasis added)

 FOR WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD (JESUS) SHALL BE SAVED (Romans 10:13)

 IF YOU believe IN Jesus AND repentant OF YOUR SINS THEN you are saved. Believe in Jesus Christ: To be the son of God; died and rose up again, and that His finished work on the Cross is more than enough to set you free. To Repent means: Being sincerely sorry for your sins and bringing them before God (between you and Him); with the aim of not going back to them.

 The Assurance of Salvation

Have you ever found yourself asking:                                                                                            Am I Now A Christian? Saved?????                                                                                                      Is Jesus really now in my life?????                                                                                                        If I die now, I don’t even know if I will end up in heaven or hell?????

Have you also ever found yourself thinking:                                                                                    “I don’t feel any different” How can I be sure Jesus has come into my life?                                          “I guess God didn’t really forgive me” my life?                                                                                         “I didn’t get that ‘emotional feeling’ my friends said they felt when they got saved.”

You may have just recently received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and you are still not sure of what happened: You still have doubts about your salvation and do lack the assurance of your relationship with God – or even worse still, have been saved for years and still struggling with these doubts:

 If you were to die today, are you absolutely sure beyond a shadow of doubt that you would go to heaven?

IF YOU believe IN Jesus AND repentant OF YOUR SINS THEN you are saved. Believe in Jesus Christ: To be the son of God; died and rose up again, and that His finished work on the Cross is more than enough to set you free. To Repent means: Being sincerely sorry for your sins and bringing them before God (between you and Him); with the aim of not going back to them.

The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying: “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you. (Jeremiah 31:3)

 Slide21

 The heart (of a saved person) is: Body (Physical Functions); Soul (Functions of Will, Intellect & Emotions); Spirit (Functions of Regenerated Conscience, Intuition and Communion). The soul (being saved) is now reflecting the purity of the heart; meaning that the effect on the soul of the functions of a liberated conscience, intuition and communion with God is demonstrated; even if and when these are the “substance of things we hope for; and evidence of things we cannot see”

Slide2

 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)

So, if to receive God’s love and forgiveness ; is to receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and:

Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith. (1 Timothy 1:5)

The soul being saved should reflect the purity of the heart; meaning that the effect of the functions of a liberated conscience, intuition and communion with God is demonstrated by the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of our righteousness and sanctification and redemption (that we cannot physically see) and the conviction of the reality (perceiving as real what is not revealed to the senses) of this fact being made real to us by our seeing ourselves hidden in Christ Jesus who became for us wisdom from God.

Then, at this point of being saved and having a regenerated heart, the soul [(Functions of Will, Intellect & Emotions) now being controlled by the spirit (Functions of a liberated conscience, intuition and communion with God ) that is in turn now also under the control of the Holy Spirit] SHOULD BE COMMITTED SOLELY TO OUR LORD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST AND ENABLED TO COMPREHEND THE SOLID BIBLICAL AND HISTORICAL FACTS THAT CHRISTIANITY IS BUILT ON.

 The Regeneration Before The Conversion Process – QUICKENING

Regeneration means that one has been born again or born from above. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. (John 3:3-8)

The new birth is the work of God, so that all those who are born again are “born of the Spirit” (John 3:8); and the means God uses to grant such new life is the Gospel of Jesus Christ:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. (1 Peter 1:3);

Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. (James 1:18)

Regeneration or being born again is a supernatural birth. Just as we cannot do anything to be born physically—it just happens to us!—so too we cannot do anything to cause our spiritual rebirth. Only the quickening of the Holy Spirit can set in motion, this spiritual rebirth. As we have seen in The Holy Spirit & The Salvation of Man (Part 2a)

This quickening must be followed by earnest seeking through repentance towards God and faith in Jesus which is MUST to move ahead as seen in acts 20:21:

Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ. Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. (Acts 2:36-42)

And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house. (Acts 16:30-34)

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it. (Matthew 13:44-46)

For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. (1 Thessalonians 1:9- 10)

And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein: Who in times past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways. (Acts 14:15-16)

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 Repentance

Greek:                                                                                                                                            Metanoeó– to change one’s mind or purpose. I repent, change my mind, change the inner man (particularly with reference to acceptance of the will of God), repent:

That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man. (Ephesians 3:16)

Hebrew:                                                                                                                                                    Nahum – to lament, to grieve. This word is describing the emotions that are aroused when motivated to take a different course of action.

For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. (2 Corinthians 7:10)

Shub – to turn back, return. This word expresses a radical change of mind toward sin and implies a conscious moral separation from sin and a decision to forsake it and agree with God.

I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. (Luke 13:3)

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It is not repentance that leads to God’s Kindness but; it is God’s kindness that triggers repentance.

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Like we touched on earlier while looking at how intuition and communion are made available through the regeneration of the spirit (direct operation of the Holy Spirit upon the human spirit at salvation). The aspects of the regeneration of the spirit being:

(Quickening) The activation of Intuition and Communion in the human spirit (this we have looked at) and:

(The Circumcision of the heart) Release of the conscience from the control of the soul (as it is the only function of the spirit in the unregenerate heart)

The Bible tells us:

Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:6-7)

And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent. (Acts 17:30)

Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. (Acts 8:22)

Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. (Haggai 1:7)

Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord. (Acts 3:19)

I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. (Luke 13:5)

I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto me; for I have redeemed thee. (Isaiah 44:22)

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 Man’s intellect picks up these messages:

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Informing and Changing of the INTELLECT (Mind) – informing and changing of the way our thoughts, ideas, concepts, reasons, understanding, knowledge etc. are processed so that they are focused on God.

And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled. (Colossians 1:21)

Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. (Colossians 3:2)

The fact that the intellect of man in its ‘natural’ state cannot comprehend the operations of God, as they are beyond its scope:

Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. (Romans 8:7)

There needs to be an ‘upgrade’ facilitated by The Holy Spirit. This ‘upgrade’ is what brings the intellect of man from its natural form to become the intuition.

But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. (1 Corinthians 2:10-11)

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‘life of nature’ exchanged for ‘spiritual’ life

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Godly Sorrow

As the Emotion is the function of our soul that deals with feelings; one of which is sorrow that comes from both the ‘nature’ (canal) or ‘spirit’ side of man; one important feeling that is necessary for repentance or perhaps the trigger for repentance is sorrow – GODLY SORROW or ‘godly grief’. It is an acute sense of sadness we experience as a result of the sins we have committed:

Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death. (2 Corinthians 7:9-10)

Unlike worldly sorrow, which comes from our ‘nature’ (canal being) and is a feeling triggered by knowing that one has been caught, and thus the need or attempts to cover up: which leads to guilt, mental distress, a temporary resolve to do better by dealing with the symptoms and ultimately death and eternal separation from God.

O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away. (Hosea 6:4).

Godly sorrow leads to repentance and life eternal

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Will of man actively working in conjunction with the Holy Spirit

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To yield result of eternal value

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NEXT:

We will have a look at: Christian Conversion GOOD CONSCIENCE; USEFUL HEART Then look out for FAITH

You might say – “Why do I have to know and experience this Jesus you are going on about?” Here is why, when and how you can get to know Him.

Admit your spiritual need.                                                                                                                We all are sinners: nobody likes that title “SINNER”, but the bible says in Romans 3:23 that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”.

What is the result of sin?                                                                                                                    In Romans 6:23 we read “The wages of sin is death…” in other words, every sin is another step towards death. One thing that we need to remember is that God never sends anyone to hell; one can send himself there by rejecting the truth.

Since we can never measure up to God’s standards by our own strength; God has reached out to mankind.                                                                                                                                     In Romans 5:8 we read, “God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”. It is Jesus, after all, who is the source of life’s greatest high.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” (John 3:16-17).

What must a person do to accept this gift?                                                                             Simply receive it! Matthew 11:28 states –“come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me…for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks, seeking entrance into your life to give you peace, change you for the best. John 1:12 says: “For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God”.

If you haven’t already received Christ as your Saviour, don’t put it off another day! Take time right now to reflect on the state of your life, how does Romans 3:23 apply to you? Ask God to empower you to see the true state of your heart – “The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) then when enabled, invite Jesus into your life. Confess your sins. Receive His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life.

You might pray something like this:

Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner in need of a Saviour. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank You for giving me eternal life. Help me to live my life in a way that pleases You, for whatever time You give me here on earth. I look forward to living forever in Heaven with You. Amen.

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JUSTIFICATION – You’re Not Guilty!! Says God

Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God

Trust and Obey – Part 5

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The Gospel of Christ – JUSTIFICATION – You’re Not Guilty!! Says God

While we do His good will, He abides with us still, And with all who will trust and obey.

“ Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: THAT CHRIST DIED FOR OUR SINS ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES, AND THAT HE WAS BURIED, AND HE ROSE AGAIN THE THIRD DAY ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPTURES, AND THAT HE WAS SEEN BY CEPHAS, THEN BY THE TWELVE. AFTER HE WAS SEEN BY OVER FIVE HUNDRED BRETHREN AT ONCE, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. 8 Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.” (1 Corinthians 15:3-8)

We are continuing with our look at the first stanza of the hymn, Trust and Obey by John Henry Sammis as part of our mini series “Maintaining a Healthy Fear of God” In previous posts we have looked at God’s good will, His original plan of His eternal purpose Ultimately being, PLAN A  – The Glory of God –  We saw that it is safe to say that His good will, His eternal purpose, is a plan to ultimately, bring us to His Glory, with provision made for perceived blunders we will make along the way.

In our last post we looked at Redemption: Before that, Propitiation  as part of God’s Regeneration of man. We saw redemption as being the act of buying something back; or an act by which the original or prospective owner of a thing pays a price to return that thing from a present owner (back) to his/her possession.

In this post we will continue with our look at this provision He has made for our blunders, Now in our mortal bodies: as we saw in  PLAN A1- The Gospel of Christ – where we started looking at regeneration as part of  GOD‘S FULL SALVATION. Here we saw regeneration as the act by which God justifies us through propitiation by Christ Jesus and regenerates us in our spirit with His life by His Spirit; that it involves: Redemption, Sanctification (positional 1 Pet. 1:2; 1Cor. 6:11), justification, reconciliation. We will now look at Justification

 Justification

Justification is a doctrine that is a legal matter to the core; as the word infers, It describes a sinner under trial before the tribunal of a God who is:

 Life –               He is the essence of the breathe of life

Spirit –            It is impossible to see Him with human eyes, but through the eye of the spirit

Omnipotence – He has the ultimate power to do whatever He wills.

Omnipresence – He fills the whole of creation which makes it possible for Him to be present everywhere at once

Omniscience – He knows all things that can be known in the past,   present, future, so nothing can escape His knowledge

Infinity –         He is, if I may say, interwoven into all things.

Nature of Love –    God’s love for us is just as His attribute of being immutable, it cannot change

Immutability – God cannot change because He is the beginning and end ‘Alpha & Omega’

“If you, LORD, should mark iniquities, …who could stand?”  (Psalm 130:3).

“There is none righteous, no, not one….” (Romans 3:10).

The dictionary Says of Justification:

A good reason or explanation for something

So in other words, Justification is:

The Act or a good reason or explanation for Making Man Right with God by grace through faith In Jesus Christ.

Justification is the “Act of God” by which (according to His promise) He approves us based on His own standard of righteousness. This He can legally do without compromising His divine righteousness because of the finished redemptive work of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ on the Cross at Calvary. This justification can only be obtained through the grace of God and not by our works.

 Aspects of Justification

PIC justification of man

There are two distinct aspects of justification:

Forgiveness

This is God‘s act of pardoning and releasing us from our mistakes or wrongdoings and actually ‗wiping them off the slate‘. (Jeremiah 31:34; John 3:18; 5:24; Acts 10:43; 26:18; Hebrews 8:12; 10:17).

Imputation

This is the application of the righteousness of Jesus Christ to us in our sinful state. (Romans 4:4-6; 5:1, 19; 8:1; 10:4; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Philippians 3:8-9)

We have:

Imputation for Positional Sanctification

PIC positional sanctification

Thank God

PIC self hussle justification of man

Imputation for Experiential Sanctification

PIC experiential sanctification

Imputation for Perfection (Christian Liberty)

“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.” (Galatians 5:13) “Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free,and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” (Galatians 5:1) “Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:17-18)

In our next post please look out for Faith (Hebrews1:1) the 4th component of Regeneration.

You might say – “Why do I have to know and experience this Jesus you are going on about” Here is why, when and how you can get to know Him.

Admit your spiritual need.

We all are sinners: nobody likes that title “SINNER”, but the bible says in Romans 3:23 that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”.

What is the result of sin?

In Romans 6:23 we read “The wages of sin is death…” in other words, every sin is another step towards death. One thing that we need to remember is that God never sends anyone to hell; one can send himself there by rejecting the truth.

Since we can never measure up to God’s standards by our own strength; God has reached out to mankind.
The Bible tells us in John 3:16-17. ”For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” In Romans 5:8 we read, “God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us”.

What must a person do to accept this gift?

Simply receive it! Matthew 11:28 states –“come to me, all you who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me…for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.

Revelation 3:20 says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with me” Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks, seeking entrance into your life to give you peace, change you for the best. John 1:12 says: “For as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God”.

If you haven’t already received Christ as your Saviour, don’t put it off another day! Take time right now to reflect on the state of your life, how does Romans 3:23 apply to you? Ask God to empower you to see the true state of your heart – “The heart of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) then when enabled, invite Jesus into your life. Confess your sins. Receive His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. You might pray something like this REPENTANTLY (Having taken time to bring your sins before God with a determination to completely turn away from them):

Dear Jesus, I know that I am a sinner in need of a Saviour. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank You for giving me eternal life. Help me to live my life in a way that pleases You, for whatever time You give me here on earth. I look forward to living forever in Heaven with You. Amen.